Triangle of Sadness director Ruben Östlund has paid tribute to Charlbi Dean, the South African actress and star of his film who died suddenly at age 32.

“Charlbi’s sudden passing is a shock and a tragedy,” the Swedish helmer wrote in an Instagram post (below), along with a behind the scenes shot of Dean from his Palme d’Or-winning film at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival. “It is an honor to have gotten to know and work with her.”

Östlund continued, “Charlbi had a care and sensitivity that lifted her colleagues and the entire film crew. The thought that she will not be by our side in the future makes me very sad. At this difficult time, my thoughts go out to her loved ones, her family and her fiance Luke.”

Dean died Monday at a hospital in New York City after what was described as an unexpected sudden illness.

The actress turned heads this year with her turn as fashion model influencer Yaya in the Triangle of Sadness. The Cannes winner and social satire, acquired by Neon, will next screen at the Toronto Film Festival and New York Film Festival before opening in theaters Oct. 7.

She also recurred for two seasons as the assassin Syonide on the CW superhero series Black Lightning, and appeared in films Blood in the Water (2016), Don’t Sleep (2017), An Interview With God (2018) and Porthole (2018).

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