The Mother of All Film Mothers Has Passed Away

Don’t worry, Farida Jalal is fine.  So is Waheedaji.  No, prepare yourself for a shock, Reema Lagoo has passed away.  Very suddenly of heart attack, at age 59.

If you are like me, your first reaction to that news, after feeling sad, is “she was only 59?”

Image result for reema lagoo

It’s not that I would necessarily have thought she was older now, it’s that I thought she was older than!  How could she have only been 30 in Maine Pyar Kiya?  Only 7 years older than SRK in Kal Ho Na Ho?

Reema carried such dignity with her.  At age 30, we could believe her as not just “old enough to have a 20 year old son”, but old enough to be wise and mature and give that 20 year old son the exact support and advice he needed.

And she must have been as wise in her personal life, because unlike the other famous mother actresses (Raakhee, Farida Jalal, Jaya Bachchan, etc.), she didn’t start trying to be a famous actress and eventually settle for mother roles.  Reema started as a mother, a role she could fill well, and never desired anything more.

She was a mother in real life as well.  After growing up as the child of Marathi stage actors, she started acting herself, and married another Marathi actor.  The marriage broke up, a few years after her daughter was born.  And Reema slowly transitioned from stage to film, and then later to TV, where she played a mother again, to Supriya Pilgoankar from Fan.

But her greatest legacy will be those warm wonderful mothers she played over and over again on films.  The Khans may have brought in romance, but Reema gave them the human touch.





11 thoughts on “The Mother of All Film Mothers Has Passed Away

  1. This is very sad news, indeed. Actually I was surprised that she was 59 –I thought she was younger than that. I knew she was not much older than the Khans when she was playing their mother.


  2. She’s so young.And she has not been in films for a long time.Probably because now that the Khans are older it wouldn’t make sense for her to play their mother. I can’t believe she was so young when she played Salman’s mother in MPK. Her best performance has to be as Sanjay Dutt’s mother in Vaastav. I remember Filmfare did a photoshoot with her and her contemporaries where they gave the mothers a makeover with wigs and leather jackets.And she said that she found Shahrukh very sexy.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I was so sad to see this on Twitter today. I love her in Yes Boss. Juhi Chawla said in a Twitter chat last year that Reema Lagoo was her favorite filmi mom. She looked the same age as SRK in Yes Boss, so looked her up after watching it. Her career trajectory reminds me of Hollywood actresses who played moms to barely younger actors a lot of the time, with grace and humor. Jessie Royce Landis was the same age difference (7 years) from Carey Grant when she played his mother in North by Northwest, for example.


  4. 😦 This is so sad – I always loved how she gave her filmi moms so much personality instead of making them just saintly caricatures. I have to say, I never did the math before to realize she was barely in her 30s in MPK: how in the world did anyone approve that casting?


    • Because it’s Reema Lagoo! She just looks like a mother.

      Her first big mother role was in QSQT, where there is a whole 20-30 minute flashback section with her as a young woman. Perhaps for that film, they decided to cast a younger actress so the flashback part would work better. And then once she proved how good she was in those kinds of roles, she just kept getting them.

      On Thu, May 18, 2017 at 7:36 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:



  5. She was also wonderful as Kajols mother in Kuch Kuch Horta Hai. Her face did all the talking in that. 59 is way way too young.


  6. Pingback: Hindi Film 101: A Journey Through SRK’s Filmography, Part 2! – dontcallitbollywood

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