MADRID (AP) — Glowing tributes have poured in for Spanish filmmaker Josep Joan Bigas Luna a day after he died following a long fight against leukemia.

Bigas Luna, whose 1992 film "Jamon, Jamon" received unanimous praise as "a classic" in the Spanish press on Sunday, is generally regarded as having had an excellent eye for spotting talent and a knack for stimulating on-screen chemistry between actors.

The director discovered actors Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem, as well as a giving early boosts to a host of other now well-known film muses including Leonor Watling, Angela Molina, Francesca Neri and Valeria Marini.

Many of his roles were explosively steamy, even erotic. Yet they often explored with great insight aspects of modern Spain's quirkiness.