One of the most recognised names of the 70s film and TV industry, Garry Marshall died on Tuesday (19 July) at the age of 81. The New York City-born actor-producer-director, known most famously for helming Hollywood classic Pretty Woman along with The Runaway Bride, Raising Helen, New Year's Eve and Princess Diaries, died a Burbank hospital from complications of pneumonia following a stroke, according to his publicist Michelle Bega.

Known for his talent for creating comedy TV shows like Happy Days, Mork And Mindy (which launched Robin Williams to stardom), The Odd Couple, The Lucy Show and The Dick Van Dyke Show, Marshall also dabbled in acting and was seen onscreen in A League Of Their Own, Hocus Pocus and Murphy Brown.

With some of television's most popular shows to his credit, not to mention a list of films including the more recent – starring Julia Roberts – Mother's Day And Valentine's Day, the legendary filmmaker went on to become the recipient of two WGA career honours – the Valentine Davies Award (1995) and Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award (2014). He also won the PGA Lifetime Achievement Award in Television and Honorary Lifetime Membership Award in 1998.

"Both of-their-time and timeless, his shows are a gentle, generous, comic mirror held up to late mid-century America," WGA West president Christopher Keyser said in January 2014 while announcing that Marshall would receive the guild's special awards. "And no one is a finer or funnier chronicler of friendship — male or female (or alien)."

Garry Marshall
Garry Marshall was best known for directing Pretty Woman Joe Scarnici/Getty Images for TV Land

Fans, friends and co-workers were quick to respond to the news of his demise and took to social media to express their sadness.