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Popular Indian character actor Om Puri dead at 66

Associated Press logo Associated Press 1/6/2017

NEW DELHI (AP) — Noted Indian character actor Om Puri has died in the western city of Mumbai. He was 66.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and a host of leading movie stars tweeted condolence messages shortly after Puri's death Friday morning.

In a career spanning more than three decades, Puri had won a slew of national awards and international fame for his work in several critically acclaimed films.

His breakthrough film was the 1983 gritty drama "Ardh Satya" or "Half Truth," about a young policeman's crisis of conscience as he deals with the nexus of crime and politics in India.

He also acted in the British comedy East is East, about the life of a Pakistani immigrant in England and had a small role in Richard Attenborough's film "Gandhi," based on the life of the Indian freedom leader Mohandas Gandhi. He also acted in several Hollywood films, including "City of Joy," ''Wolf" and "Charlie Wilson's War."

In 2014 he starred with British actress Helen Mirren in the comedy "The Hundred-Foot Journey."

Puri was made an honorary officer of the Order of the British Empire for his contribution to British cinema in 2004.

His body will be cremated later Friday.

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