Kolkata: Director Aparna Sen mourned the death of legendary Bollywood actor Shashi Kapoor on Tuesday.
Recalling that Kapoor had produced her first directorial venture 36 Chowringhee Lane in 1981, Sen thanked the legendary actor-producer and shared a heartwarming message for the thespian.
"Dear, dear Seth-ji! Big hearted man, you lived life king size! There was nothing small about you. Not a mean bone in your body! I was so, so lucky to have you as the producer of my first film! You never let me feel the heat, protected me from all the bumps, & at the same time gave me such independence as a first time director never hopes to get! Did I ever say thank you Seth-ji? If I didn't, I'm saying it now. With all my heart! You were the best. Be happy wherever you may be now & keep breaking hearts with that gorgeous smile of yours! Will love you always... Coppola."
Sen also shared that even though they knew the end was near, it is still difficult to accept the demise. "He was ailing and it was inevitable. Kunnu (Kunal Kapoor) said he passed away peacefully."
She said he had last met Kapoor two years back.
"As he was seated on a wheel chair I went near him and introduced myself. He had a blank look and once I said can't you recognise the director of 36 Chowringhee Lane, his face lit up."
"He used to call me Coppola, after (film maker) Francis Ford Coppola, while I used to call him Sethji. We knew the end will come, but it was shocking," she said.
Another filmmaker Goutam Ghosh also remembered Kapoor and said he was a charming actor and a wonderful person.
"He was a heart throb among the women of our generation," Ghosh said adding he had once offered to produce a directorial venture of Ghosh.
"He had been trained under Geoffrey Kendal and was a theatre buff. He used to run Prithvi theatre in Mumbai," Ghosh said.
Kapoor died at the age of 79 at the Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital in Mumbai on Monday.
(With inputs from PTI)