PETALING JAYA: Award-winning actress Azean Irdawaty (pix), 63, passed away at the University Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) here after suffering complications from various illnesses, including cancer.
Azean died at 8.30pm on Tuesday night with her husband, Khairil Anwar, and children Khaeryll Benjamin, Elza Irdalynna and Inessa Irdayanty at her bedside.
She was said to have been in and out of hospital after being stricken by breast cancer, which had reached a critical stage.
Azean, who once popularised the song Bawalah Daku Bersamamu in the 1980s, was the first person to win the Best Actress Award at the inaugural Malaysian Film Festival (MFF1) in 1980 for Esok Masih Ada.
She reprised the victory in the same category in 1982 for her role in Langit Petang.
Throughout her entertainment career, Azean acted in numerous films including Mama Oh Mama, Perjanjian Syaitan, Perempuan, Bintang Malam, Sutera Putih, Baginda, Layar Lara, Mami Jarum Kembali and Waris Jari Hantu as well as a host of local television dramas such as Aishah 50 Sen, Ratu Jamu, Kembali and Najihah.
Her last movie was Talentime, made by the late Yasmin Ahmad in 2009.
Among the young stars Azean influenced in her long career is award-winning actress Sharifah Armani, who tweeted: “Thank you for the years of inspiration, Aunty Yan.”
Kavita Sidhu, who appeared in Layar Lara and Waris Jari Hantu with Azean, said she was saddened by the news.
“I met her on Layar Lara which was the first film I did. I learned a lot from her. She was an amazing and remarkable person, a very disciplined and professional actress. (Her passing) is a huge loss to the industry. She was one of the greats.”