An actor’s life brings surprises with every part and when George Pogatsia of Jersey City found himself on a film set about to play a role, something happened that eventually led him to make his own films.
“I heard a little voice like Kazoo from ‘The Flintstones’ that said you can do this,” Pogatsia says on a break during post-production of his new movie. “I heard ‘you can do this’ then I heard ‘maybe not’. Then I heard ‘let’s try’.”
On the HBO award-winning TV series THESOPRANOS (1999-2007) it was easy to like Vincent Curatola’s character Johnny “Sack” Sacramoni, a mobster who worshipped his heavyset wife. Sure, Curatola’s character was a cold-blooded killer and he was scary to watch, but there was always a touch of humor, especially when he had to endure wisecracks about his wife’s weight. Curatola was so convincing that when Johnny Sack winced at a fat joke, the viewers did, too.
A Jersey guy, Curatola grew up in Englewood a residential community just north of the George Washington Bridge. According to his website – VincentCuratola.com – he always had the acting bug and it was his wife Maureen who encouraged him to take classes. Soon after Curatola brought Johnny Sack to life.
In the seven years since the show ended, Curatola has made a few movies, appeared in several TV shows and taught acting in New York. He recently taped five episodes as an exasperated judge on the CBS hit show THE GOOD WIFE starring Julianna Margolis. Has it been difficult for Curatola to reinvent himself after eight years in a hit series? Do all roles pale in comparison to Johnny Sack?
On a recent afternoon,Mr. Curatola took time from his busy schedule to speak to RiverViewObserver about what it’s like to continue his career after THE SOPRANOS.
RVO: Mr. Curatola, can you tell us a little about your background; where you grew up?
VC: I was born and raised in Englewood and I had a unique paper route on the block I lived on. My customers were Tony Bennett, Jerry Vale, Wilson Pickett, Lesley Gore, Dizzy Gillespie and Sarah Vaughn. I used to deliver The Record. My father had a masonry business and I started one on my own in the mid-1970s, but I had fantasies (about acting). So I went to study with Michael Moriarty.
RVO: Did you do much acting before being cast in THE SOPRANOS?
VC: Michael got me on LAW & ORDER and I wrote a one act play about a funeral guy called DEARLY BELOVED. I also did the show EXILED.
Family on Board, written and directed by George Pogatsia, may be short in length but boasts a cast tailored for the big-screen. The film features a stellar, hand-selected cast who collectively have garnered numerous Golden Globe, Emmy, SAG and Academy Award nominations and wins.
Pogatsia, who also produced and stars in Family on Board, plays Mike Petito – a family man and biker who receives a questionable prison sentence. On creating the motion picture, Pogatsia states, “The minute I finished the Family on Board script, I knew I had to direct this story.” Continue reading “Family on Board” A Short Film Big On Talent→
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