Goodbye, Mr. Soprano

New York, June 20, 2013. Since last night and all of today, there’s been the name of only one man dominating the media and people’s conversations from Italy to Jersey and far beyond – the man who became legendary in his role of TV’s favorite Italian-American mobster Tony Soprano – actor James Gandolfini. He died in Rome, Italy, last night of a sudden heart attack. He was only 51 years old.

Here is a wonderful, candid and insightful interview of his from the series “Inside the Actor’s Studio” in New York. 

RIP James Gandolfini, who despite all his other movie, theatre and TV roles, will forever be entrenched in the psyche of his audience as the complicated and memorable character of  Tony Soprano.

At the price of sounding like a total buffoon, I will admit that I am perhaps, one of the very few in North America who did not watch the entire series. Five sporadic episodes was all that I’d watched (television has never been one of my pass times, and the only few shows I watch/watched with some regularity are Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show, BBC’s Planet Earth, a few wildlife series on National Geographic and yes – a guilty addiction – Science Channel’s How it is made. And of course, Monty Python any time, as well as BBC’s Sherlock. For some reason, soaps, drama, character-laden plots just don’t draw me in. Don’t know why – they just don’t (unless it involves Daniel Day Lewis.)

But just five episodes of the Sopranos were enough to at least understand what a great actor Gandolfini was. While I could not share the same addiction as many of my friends had for the series, I can fully comprehend their immense attachment to the show. So, while for many who loved him as Tony Soprano, it was as though the mob-boss himself had died, for me – this interview reveals more the workings of one of the finest television actors of our time James Gandolfini.