The death of actor JAMES GANDOLFINI has sent a shock wave through Hollywood, prompting a slew of tributes from heartbroken stars including SUSAN SARANDON, RUSSELL CROWE, LINDSAY LOHAN and EWAN MCGREGOR.
The Sopranos star passed away on Wednesday (19Jun13) after reportedly suffering a heart attack in Rome, Italy ahead of an appearance at the Taormina Film Festival in Sicily later this week (beg17Jun13).
The 51 year old's iconic role as mob boss Tony Soprano in the hit TV series won him the respect of his fellow actors and directors, and tributes have poured in from his former colleagues and fans.
Sarandon, who starred opposite Gandolfini in 2005 film Romance & Cigarettes, writes in a post on Twitter.com, "So sad to lose James Gandolfini. One of the sweetest, funniest, most generous actors I've ever worked with. Sending prayers to his family."
Olivia Wilde, who worked with him on this year's (13) The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, writes, "James Gandolfini was a kind, funny, wonderful guy. I'm so lucky to have worked with him. Sending love to his family. Such a sad, sad day."
His Surviving Christmas co-star Christina Applegate writes, "I am so deeply saddened by the untimely passing of sweet James Gandolfini! My heart is broken for his family!! I'm in shock."
Crowe took to Twitter.com to recall his first meeting with Gandolfini in the early 1990s, writing, "Sad to hear about James Gandolfini. First met Jimmy back in '94. He was roommates in NY with (actor) Lenny Loftin (sic). Lovely man. RIP Jimmy."
McGregor tweets, "Jesus. The world just lost one of its great actors. James Gandolfini has passed away. Thoughts to his family. Such a talent. I'm saddened," and Samuel L. Jackson adds, "Massive blow to the acting community today... The passing of James Gandolfini. So talented. My heart goes out to his family!"
The news even prompted a response from troubled actress Lohan, who sent a message from rehab, where she is serving out a court-ordered treatment program. A message posted on her Twitter.com page, reads, "From Lindsay: 'James Gandolfini was a dear friend and a great man. My heart goes out to his family. He will be greatly missed' - team Lohan."
Stars from the world of music were also saddened to hear of Gandolfini's death, with Justin Timberlake writing, "Really though... This James Gandolfini passing is so sad. My heart goes out to his family in this time. RIP. Taken too soon," while Aerosmith rocker Steven Tyler adds, "You were... and always will be... A true gift! James Gandolfini."
Other tributes came from stars including Val Kilmer, John Cusack, Rose McGowan, Mia Farrow, Bette Midler, Michael J. Fox, Debra Messing, Jonah Hill, Wes Craven and Busy Philipps.