Robert De Niro is ''so saddened'' by Philip Seymour Hoffman's death.

The legendary actor has paid tribute to his 'Flawless' co-star - who was found dead aged 46 of an apparent drugs overdose yesterday (02.02.14) - describing him as ''gifted'' and a ''wonderful'' actor.

He said: ''I'm very, very saddened by the passing of Phil. He was a wonderful actor. This is one of those times where you say 'this just shouldn't be. He was so young and gifted and had so much going, so much to live for'. My family and I send our deepest condolences to his family.''

De Niro was one of many of the actor's co-stars to express their sadness at his passing.

Jeff Bridges, who appeared alongside him in cult bowling movie 'The Big Lebowski', said: ''I'm so shocked, and so sad hearing of Philip Seymour Hoffman's death. I enjoyed playing with him on 'The Big Lebowski'. He was such a wonderful guy, and so damn talented, a real treasure. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.''

And 'Ides of March' actor George Clooney said: ''There are no words. It's just terrible.''

Tom Hanks, who appeared with Philip in 'Charlie Wilson's War' praised the Oscar-winning actor's ''giant talent''.

He said in a statement: ''This is a horrible day for those who worked ‎with Philip. He was a giant talent. Our hearts are open for his family.''

Gwyneth Paltrow shared a picture of herself, Philip, Jude Law and a female friend in Italy after working on 'The Talented Mr. Ripley' on her Instagram account.

She wrote alongside it: ''Ischia 1998, post dinner, post shooting...Philip was a true genius. #philipseymourhoffman.''