Malayalam film star Kollam Ajith, known for portraying negative roles, died on Thursday at a private hospital here, family sources said.
Ajith, 56, was admitted to the hospital ten days ago following health issues.
Ajith, in a career spread over three decades, had acted in around 500 films, mostly in Malayalam besides a few in Tamil and Hindi.
He started his career with the 1984 hit "Paranu Paranu Paranu" by ace Malayali director Padmarajan.
Ajith was often referred to as Malayalam film industry's permanent villain on account of his role in the hugely successful "Irupathaam Noottaandu" (1987) starring Mohanlal. Since then he was the first choice for villain roles.
Ajith's body will be taken to Kollam, where the last rites would be performed later in the day.