Versatile Pamela Chopra Dies; SRK, Aamir, Katrina, Other Stars Share Grief
MUMBAI (IANS) – The demise of producer-singer-writer Pamela Chopra, who was also the wife and brains trust of filmmaker Yash Chopra, founder of Yash Raj Films, has left the Hindi film industry mourning.
After she was cremated in the morning hours of April 20, members of the Hindi film fraternity made a beeline to the Chopra mansion on the Juhu-Tara Road area of Mumbai to pay their respects to the departed soul.
Among the industry notables to visit the Chopra house were Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan who arrived with son Aryan Khan, Aamir Khan, Shabana Azmi, John Abraham, Boman Irani, Vicky Kaushal and Katrina Kaif.
SRK recently delivered the blockbuster ‘Pathaan’ for YRF, just as he had done for ‘Darr’ and ‘Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge’, for which Pamela Chopra sang the number ‘Ichak Dana’.
The other members of the film fraternity to visit the Chopra home were Poonam Dhillon, Shraddha Kapoor, Nitin Mukesh, composer Salim Merchant of the Salim-Sulaiman duo, who have worked on YRF productions such as ‘Fanaa’, ‘Mardaani’, ‘Ladies vs Ricky Bahl’ and ‘Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi’.
Pamela Chopra was 74. She was ailing for a couple of weeks and was admitted to a private hospital for treatment. She is survived by her two sons – Aditya Chopra, film-maker who is married to actress Rani Mukherjee, and actor-producer Uday Chopra.
Pamela, a cousin of the renowned actress and now TV hostess Simi Garewal, was married in 1970 to Yash Chopra, the younger brother of the legendary film-maker B.R.Chopra, a Dadasaheb Phalke Awardee.
Yash Chopra, also a Dadasaheb Phalke Award laureate, passed away in Mumbai in October 2012, aged 80, due to dengue fever.
Singing in Hindi and Punjabi after marriage, Pamela Chopra is remembered for several popular numbers like the vivacious ‘Main sasural nahin jaoongi’ (Chandni, 1989), folk song ‘Banno ki aayegi baraat’ (Aaina, 1993), ‘Ghar aaja pardesi’ (Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, 1995), sad number ‘Surkh jode ki ye jagmagahat’ (Kabhie Kabhie, 1976), a courtesan song ‘Idhar aa sitamgar’ (Sawaal, 1982), a qawwali ‘Aashiq ho to aisa ho’ and the sombre ‘Uske khel nirale’ (both from Noorie, 1979), ‘Ja re behna ja’ (Trishul, 1978).
She sang solo and duets, for several leading music composers like the late Mohammed Zahur Hashmi ‘Khayyam’, Rajesh Roshan, Shiv-Hari, Jatin-Lalit, Dilip Sen-Sameer Sen and others, though mostly for films made by her family banner.
Pamela had other roles too, like co-writer for ‘Kabhie Kabhie’, producer for ‘Aaina’, Associate Producer for one of Bollywood’s biggest superhits ‘Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge’, and also for ‘Mohabbatein’, ‘Mujhse Dosti Karoge’, ‘Mere Yaar Ki Shaadi Hai’, ‘Veer Zara’, co-producer and writer of ‘Dil To Paagal Hai’, and the dress designer for ‘Silsila’ and ‘Sawaal’.
A trained dancer, along with her late husband, she once made a brief on-screen appearance in the song ‘Ek Duuje Ke Vaaste’ (Dil To Paagal Hai).