Stars including Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman have taken to Twitter to pay tribute to Sean Connery, who has died aged 90.
The charismatic Scottish actor rose to international superstardom as suave, fearless secret agent James Bond and then abandoned the role to carve out an equally successful, Oscar-winning career playing a variety of leading and character roles.
Sir Sean died peacefully in his sleep in the Bahamas, having been “unwell for some time”, according to his son.
Jason Connery said his father “had many of his family, who could be in the Bahamas, around him” when he died overnight in Nassau.
Daniel Craig, the current James Bond, said Sir Sean was “one of the true greats of cinema”.
“Sir Sean Connery will be remembered as Bond and so much more,” he said.
“He defined an era and a style. The wit and charm he portrayed on screen could be measured in megawatts; he helped create the modern blockbuster.
“He will continue to influence actors and film-makers alike for years to come. My thoughts are with his family and loved ones.”
Dame Shirley Bassey, who sang the themes to three Bond films, paid tribute saying: “I’m incredibly saddened to hear of Sean’s passing.
“My thoughts are with his family. He was a wonderful person, a true gentleman and we will be forever connected by Bond.”
Bond producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli said they were “devastated” by the news.
“He was and shall always be remembered as the original James Bond whose indelible entrance into cinema history began when he announced those unforgettable words – ‘The name’s Bond… James Bond,’” they said in a statement on Saturday.
Actor Hugh Jackman wrote, “I grew up idolizing #SeanConnery. A legend on screen, and off. Rest In Peace.”
And Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she was “heartbroken” at the news. “Our nation today mourns one of her best loved sons,” she said.
“He was a global legend but, first and foremost, a patriotic and proud Scot – his towering presence at the opening of the Scottish Parliament in 1999 showed his love for the country of his birth. Sean was a lifelong advocate of an independent Scotland and those of us who share that belief owe him a great debt of gratitude.”
Star Wars director George Lucas, who also created the Indiana Jones character, said Sir Sean “left an indelible mark in cinematic history”.
“I’m thankful for having had the good fortune to have known and worked with him. My thoughts are with his family.”
His publicist Nancy Seltzer said there will be a private ceremony followed by a memorial yet to be planned once the virus has ended.