London– Helmer Jagmohan Mundhra, popularly known as Jag Mundhra, died in Mumbai Sunday following a cardiac arrest. He was 62.
Mundhra debuted in 1982 with the Hindi-language thriller “Suraag.” 1984’s “Kamla” that looked at the flesh trade in India won much acclaim.
Mundhra then moved to the U.S. and directed several English-language erotic thrillers through the 90s including “Night Eyes,” “Wild Cactus” and “Sexual Malice.”
In 2000 Mundhra made “Bawandar,” the first of his unfinished trilogy on Indian women’s issues. The film starred Nandita Das (“Fire”) and had an extended festival run. The second in the series was 2006’s U.K. set “Provoked” that starred Das and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (“The Pink Panther 2”).
He was prepping the third in the series “Kissa Kutte Ka” at the time of his death. The film was to have starred Seema Biswas (“Midnight’s Children”) and Tannishtha Chatterjee (“Brick Lane”).
Mundhra is also known for 2007’s London set terrorism drama “Shoot On Sight,” starring Naseeruddin Shah, Greta Scacchi and Brian Cox.
His dream project was an $18 million biopic on Italian-born Indian political leader Sonia Gandhi, starring Monica Bellucci. But that was stalled after Gandhi’s Congress Party served a legal notice on the producer.
Mundhra’s wife Chandra survives him.