Ace scriptwriter Dennis Joseph, who wrotes for several superhit films in the eighties and nineties that made actors Mammootty and Mohanlal superstars, passed away after suffering a cardiac arrest on Monday night, industry sources said.
Joseph, who began his career in the early eighties as a journalist with a film magazine, later started writing scripts. He penned scripts for 45 films besides directing five movies, of which 'Manu Uncle' fetched him the national award for best children's film in 1988.
Joseph's last wrote the script for ace director Priyadarshan's film 'Geethanjali' in 2013. He was planning another scriot, which was in the pipeline.
On Monday night, Joseph collapsed at his house in Kottayam and was rushed to a hospital, where he was declared dead on arrival.
Among the all-time Malayalam hits, Joseph had written the script for the blockbuster 'New Delhi', a film which gave a new lease of life to Mammootty's career in 1987.
Whenever Joseph and director Joshy got together, they scripted some of the biggest success stories in the Malayalam film industry.
Mohanlal's career took an upward surge following the 1986 hit movie 'Rajavinte Makhan', which was scripted by Joseph and directed by Thampi Kannanthanam.
When he wrote 'No. 20 Madras Mail', it saw both Mammootty and Mohanlal acting together in the Joshy directorial.
Reacting to the demise of Joseph, Mohanlal said that "no doubt it was he who made me".
"Take any character that I played, I owe it to him. And the big films of yesteryears were also made in other languages just because of the power of his script. The dialogues of 'Rajavinte Makhan' continue to reverberate even now and that says everything. Never felt he would go this fast," said Mohanlal.
Another superstar Suresh Gopi, presently a member of the Rajya Sabha whose role in 'New Delhi' also catapulted his film career, said that he was shocked to hear this extremely sad news.