Popular art director, who worked in Vijay's 'Varisu', passes away at 50: Condolences pour in!

In a shocking piece of news, popular art director Sunil Babu has passed away on Thursday - January 5 at the age of 50 due to cardiac arrest. Babu is known across the cinema industries and he also worked in Vijay's upcoming flick 'Varisu', which eventually became one of his last movie. After learning about his demise, the crew of Varisu and several fans and fraternities have been paying tribute to the deceased technician. 

According to reports, Sunil Babu was admitted to a private hospital in Ernakulam, Kerala after suffering a health discomfort. Amid the treatments, he breathed his last on Thursday. Sunil Babu was a native of Mallappally in the Pathanamthitta district of Kerala and he had worked in several Malayalam movies as an art director and production designer. He was surviving by his wife Prema and his daughter Arya Saraswathi. 

Sunil Babu made his Mollywood debut as an assistant to production designer Sabu Cyril. Besides Malayalam, he worked in several Tamil, Hindi, and Telugu movie industries. PTI quoted Babu's family source saying, "He had recently undergone a surgery in his leg. Yesterday (Thursday), the hospital where he underwent surgery found variations in his ECG report and referred him to Amrita Hospital. But he passed away there." 

As an art director, Sunil Babu worked in several movies including 'Anandabhadram', 'Urumi', 'Ghajini', 'Thuppaki', 'Lakshya', 'Notebook', 'Aami', 'Bangalore Days', 'Casanovva', 'Police', and 'Sita Ramam'. As a production designer, Sunil Babu worked in the movies including 'Ramaiya Vastavaiya', 'Maharshi', 'MS Dhoni: The Untold Story', 'Operation Romeo', 'Oopiri', 'Special 26', 'Tahaan', 'Bheeshma Parvam', and the latest 'Varisu'. 

Besides Varisu, Sunil Babu was also working as a production designer in the upcoming movies 'Cyanide' and 'Mumbaikar'. He was conferred with the Kerala State Film Award for Best Art Director for the drama film 'Ananthabhadram'. Several stars are paying tribute to the deceased soul. Malayalam star Dulquer Salmaan, who played the lead role in Sita Ramam, wrote, "Heart hurts. The kindest warmest soul who quietly went about his work with so much passion and made no noise about his immense talent." 

"Suniletta, thank you for the memories. You brought life to our films. Can't come to terms with this. Praying for your family and all those who loved you dearly", Salmaan added. Popular director Anjali Menon, who helmed 'Bangalore Days', wrote, "Utterly shocked to hear of Sunil Babu's demise. We worked together on Bangalore Days and I have some wonderful memories that I will always hold dear. Rest in peace dear Sunil." 

Malayalam director Rosshan Andrews wrote on social media, "A great friend, great man with good soul, my loving brother, our countless cheers nights, we travelled a lot, a lot...thank you for all memorable days, bro these pictures will remain till end of my film career...without you there is no 'Notebook', 'Casanovva', 'Kayamkulam Kochunni'. What a technician you are my bro, I learnt a lot from you! Rest in peace." 

As Sunil Babu worked in Varisu as a production designer, his untimely demise had left the team in a shock. Mourning his loss, Varisu's director Vamshi Paidipally wrote, "You have left a void Sunil Sir...You have been a Brother and a soulmate...You passed away in silence, the way You always worked...You breathed life into every film you designed...Will miss You for this life Sunil Sir... Om Shanti." The sources said that Sunil Babu's final rites and cremation will take place at his native Mallappally in the Pathanamthitta district on Saturday - January 7.