Malayalam director Siddique passes away

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Director Siddique.
| Photo Credit: The Hindu

Popular filmmaker Siddique, 68, who suffered a heart attack on August 7, died in Kochi on August 8, 2023.

The death occurred around 9.10 p.m at the Amrita hospital, where he had been undergoing treatment for liver-related ailments over the last one month.  His condition had worsened on Monday. Doctors had put him on ECMO (Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) support. He is survived by wife, Shajitha, and three daughters.

B. Unnikrishnan, filmmaker, who announced his death said that the funeral will be held at 6 p.m at the Central Juma Masjid, Ernakulam on August 9. The body will be kept at the Rajiv Gandhi indoor stadium in Kadavantra from 9 a. m to 12 noon for the public to pay homage, he said.

A native of Kochi, Mr. Siddique entered the Malayalam film industry along with his friend Lal as assistant director to veteran director Fazil in 1983. The duo went on to create some of the biggest comedy blockbusters in Malayalam, including Ramji Rao Speaking, In Harihar Nagar, Godfather and Vietnam Colony. He has also directed films in Tamil, Telugu, and Hindi. His films Friends and Kaavalan in Tamil where he collaborated with actor Vijay, were well-received.‘

Governor Arif Mohammed Khan has condoled the death of Siddique. In a tweet, the Governor said: “Heartfelt condolences on the sad demise of Sri #Siddique, noted film director. His films stood apart, with characters one could easily relate to, and setting benchmarks for comedy and entertainment. May his soul rest in peace.”

Condoling the death, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said Siddique started off as a mimicry artiste and evolved into a popular filmmaker. He excelled in presenting serious issues of life in a humorous style. He was also a brilliant screenwriter. The fact that scenes from the movies he directed with Lal are still cherished by cineastes bears testimony to the acceptance of his talent, Mr. Vijayan said.

His films such as Ramji Rao Speaking, In Harihar Nagar and Godfather found acceptance across generations. Siddique was able to contribute to the film industry in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi as well. His demise is an irreparable loss to Malayalam films and the people, the Chief Minister said.  

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