Dev Anand Dies

12/05/2011 at 08:45 AM EST

Dev Anand Dies
Dev Anand earlier this year
Yogen Shah/India Today Group/Getty
Dev Anand, the Indian actor revered the world over for his stylish film work and his youthful, ebullient approach to life, died in London on Sunday of a heart attack. He was 88.

Anand, who acted in more than 110 films in a career that spanned six decades, was a Bollywood legend and an icon for generations of young people. With his good looks and stately personal bearing, he became a major star soon after his 1946 silver-screen debut, and was often compared to the American actor Gregory Peck.

News of his death brought an immediate outpouring of grief and remembrance.

"Dev Anand was a great artist who entertained generations of cinema lovers over five decades," Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh said in a statement. "He was an embodiment of long passion for acting and filmmaking. I join millions of his fans in mourning his death."

On Twitter, Bollywood star Amitabh Bachchan wrote that Anand's death "leaves a void never perhaps to be filled again." The novelist Salman Rushdie wrote: "I grew up watching your films. Sorry to say goodbye."

Anand, who also produced and directed movies, was reportedly in London for a medical checkup. He will be cremated this week in the British capital, according to reports.

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