Tributes poured in today to actress Natasha Richardson who has died after an accident during a skiing lesson.
Critics and showbusiness figures hailed the 45-year-old star as a "wonderful performer" and sent their sympathies to her husband, Irish actor Liam Neeson.
Neeson and Richardson's family - many of them stars of stage and screen - were "shocked and devastated" by her death, which came after she fell while taking a supervised lesson on a beginners' run at the luxury Mont Tremblant resort in Quebec, Canada, on Monday.
Alan Nierob, Neeson's publicist, said: "Liam Neeson, his sons, and the entire family are shocked and devastated by the tragic death of their beloved Natasha.
"They are profoundly grateful for the support, love and prayers of everyone, and ask for privacy during this very difficult time."
Neeson, 56, Richardson's mother, Oscar-winning actress Vanessa Redgrave, 72, and two sons, Michael, 13, and Daniel, 12, visited her after she was flown from Canada to Lenox Hill Hospital in New York, where she died last night.
Lindsay Lohan, who co-starred with Richardson in the 1998 film The Parent Trap, said: "She was a wonderful woman and actress and treated me like I was her own. My heart goes out to her family. This is a tragic loss."
Film director Michael Winner said: "It's a terrible, terrible thing. It's always tragic when people of such buoyancy and life are taken away on what appears to be utterly trivial events.
"She was a wonderful actress - the whole family is incredible - and she had not yet fulfilled her possibilities.
"Whenever you met her, it was like a joy. It's a twinkle and a sparkle that has left the world."
Chat show host Michael Parkinson said: "I met her a couple of times, I know Liam quite well, I've interviewed him two or three times.
"My thoughts are with him, it's a terrible, awful tragedy.
"They are a close-knit family, they will be able to share their grief together, that is the only consolation.
"Liam is one of the nicest guys I've met in the business, and so was she. They were very unshowy people, they did a job, got on with their lives, enjoyed their lives - it's very sad."
US lifestyle guru Martha Stewart commented on her website: "Just heard the tragic news about poor Natasha Richardson.
"Her family must be devastated. My sincerest condolences to all."
“A twinkle and a sparkle have left the world,” lamented Michael Winner. Director Sam Mendes spoke of a “gifted, brave, tenacious, wonderful woman” whose going “defies belief”. These were the tributes — and so many more — that flowed yesterday for the British actress Natasha Richardson who died in New York.