Calling him a 'great genius', 'torchbearer of new wave Bengali cinema' and 'true artist', Bollywood and the Bengali film industry today mourned the sudden demise of director-actor Rituparno Ghosh.
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, who gave memorable performances in Ghosh's Chokher Bali and Raincoat, said she was shocked to hear the news of his death.
"I am shocked and deeply sadden by this news. I just can't believe it. May his soul rest in peace," Aishwarya said in a statement.
Fondly called 'Rituda', his films gave a new wave to the Bengali film industry. His films glorified women, their inner feelings, passion and sufferings.
Abhishek Bachchan, who worked with Ghosh in 2005 film Antarmahal, posted, "Absolutely shocked with the news of the passing of Ritu da. A dear friend and a great director and a wonderful, wonderful human. RIP Rituda."
Veteran Bengali actor Soumitra Chatterjee said his death left a void in the industry.
"He was a great genius and the void left after his death cannot be easily filled," he said.
Subhash Ghai, who dubbed one of the Ghosh's Bengali film Nauka Dubi in Hindi, remembers him as the 'finest filmmaker of the industry.
"India has lost one of the finest filmmaker in Bengali cinema. He was extremely sensitive director and a true artist. He directed one film Nauka Dubi which was produced by me. It was based on a true story on Rabindranath Tagore. It was an instant hit in Bengal. I liked the film so much that I dubbed it in Hindi as Kashmakash and released it in Mumbai and Delhi," Ghai said.
Anupam Kher, whose wife Kiron worked with the late filmmaker in Bariwali, posted, "Deeply saddened and shocked by the sudden demise of Rituparno Ghosh. He directed Bariwali, first film I produced. Have amazing memories of him."
Actress Vidya Balan said she was to do a film with Ghosh.
"It is shocking because he was young. I can't believe he is no more. I did call up a few people to check if the news was true. He has left behind beautiful films. After Parineeta we were to do a film together....We were in talks," Vidya said.
Mira Nair tweeted, "Tragic news of film maker Rituparno Ghosh passing away - so young, so brilliant, a great experimenter in all cinema and life - a flame dies."
Arjun Rampal, who worked with Ghosh in The Last Lear, said, "Absolutely numbed by the saddest news of Rituparno Ghosh not being with us anymore. Loss of a dear friend, adventurous filmmaker. Who taught me so much. A bit too premature departure, will always feel your void my friend. RIP."
Actor Ajay Devgn, who worked with Ghosh in Raincoat, said his films delved with the unique subjects of the society.
"Shocked and saddened to hear about Rituparno Ghosh's death. It was great working with him in 'Raincoat' and his way of looking at things was so different and unique," Ajay posted on Twitter.
Raima Sen, granddaughter of legendary Suchitra Sen, said she was indebted to 'Rituda' who gave her a major role of her career.
"Rituda gave the turning point to my career in the film Chokher Bali. He was more than a director to me; he was almost a part of our family. He was a unmeasurable genius," she said.
"Very very sad that the man whose every frame spoke of cinematic beauty and gave a new identity to New wave Bengali Cinema is no more. The last time we met we spoke of doing a project together. He wanted me to direct a story idea by him with him Madhuri and Nana Patekar," Onir posted on Twitter.
Actress Bipasha Basu, who worked with him in Shob Charitro Kalponik, tweeted, "Landed in Coimbatore and got heartbreaking news! Ritu da has passed away! Don't want to believe it! I have such wonderful memories with him!"
Divya Dutta, who worked with the ace director in The last Lear, posted "Shocked to hear about Rituda! Not sinking in! Fondest memories of wrking with him in 'The last lear'! RIP."
Filmmaker Shekhar Kapur posted, "Shocked by passing of Rituparno Ghosh. He was dreaming of getting into what he called his 'next phase'. Hugely creative explorer on film."