Comedian and actor Ismail Tara, of Fifty-Fifty fame, passed away in Karachi on Thursday evening, his family confirmed.
The 73-year-old actor had been suffering from renal issues, with family stating that both his kidneys had stopped working and he was on a ventilator at a private hospital in Karachi before breathing his last on Thursday evening.
Tara belonged to the earliest crop of stage and television comedians in Pakistan.
He started his television career in 1964, writing scripts and performing in some of the plays.
He ended up on the crew for the popular television comedy series Fifty-Fifty. He acted and wrote for the show.
While he worked in stage plays and films, television remained his favorite medium, performing in plays as recently as this year with Woh Pagal Si.
On the silver screen, Tara was dubbed as the Pakistani ‘Johny Walker’ performing in hit movies such as the 1993 film Haathi Mere Saathi alongside a young Reema Khan, John Rambo Sahiba Afzal and veteran Shafqat Cheema.
His role in the movie won him his first Nigar Award – Pakistan’s equivalent to the Oscars.
He followed up that Nigar Award with four more in Aakhri Mujran, Munda Bigra Jaye, Chief Sahib, and Deewarein.
His other memorable performances on the silver screen came as recently as 2015 in Jawani Phir Nahi Aani.
He also tried his hand at many serious roles as well, on both film and television, but he was always remembered for his comedy.