Nitin Chandrakant Desai, the Indian production designer best known for his work on the Oscar-nominated “Lagaan” (2001) and BAFTA-nominated “Devdas” (2002), was found dead Aug. 2 at his studio in Karjat, near Bollywood capital Mumbai. He was 57.

According to Indian news agency PTI, local police suspect that Desai allegedly died of suicide, though they are investigating further.

During his distinguished career, Desai worked with Mira Nair on the Oscar-nominated “Salaam Bombay” (1988) and “Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love.” He also worked with several leading Bollywood filmmakers including Vidhu Vinod Chopra on “Parinda” (1989) and “1942: A Love Story” (1993); Sanjay Leela Bhansali on “Khamoshi: The Musical” (1995), “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam” (1999) and “Devdas” (2002); Ashutosh Gowariker on “Lagaan” (2001) and “Jodhaa Akbar” (2008); and Rajkumar Hirani on the “Munna Bhai” franchise. He also designed the “Slumdog Millionaire” (2008) set for “Kaun Banega Crorepati?,” the Indian version of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?”

In 2003, Desai produced “Desh Devi Maa Ashapura” and went on to produce films and TV series that showcased his prowess with historical backdrops including “Raja Shivchhatrapati” (2008) and “Chittod Ki Rani Padmini Ka Johur” (2009).

In 2005, Desai set up the ND Studios at Karjat. He directed two films, “Hello Jai Hind!” and “Ajintha” (2012).

Desai won best art direction at India’s National Film Awards four times, for “Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar,” “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam,” “Lagaan” and “Devdas.”

The production designer’s untimely death is being mourned by Bollywood A-listers. Akshay Kumar posted: “Unbelievably sad to know about the demise of Nitin Desai. He was a stalwart in production design and such a big part of our cinema fraternity. He worked on so many of my films… this is a huge loss. Out of respect, we are not releasing the OMG 2 trailer today. Will launch it tomorrow at 11am. Om Shanti.”

Sanjay Dutt wrote: “Deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Nitin Desai. A brilliant art director and a good friend, his contribution to Indian cinema has been monumental. My thoughts are with his family and friends during this difficult time.”

Manoj Bajpayee tweeted: “So saddened and shocked to read the news of passing away of our very Own NITIN DESAI! Will take some time to process this !A great artiste and lovely friend ! Why nitin? Why? Rest in peace my friend.”

If you or anyone you know is having thoughts of suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by dialing 988 or go to