Tag Archives: James Gandolfini

LIFE AFTER SOPRANOS Actor Vincent Curatola Picks up where Johnny ‘Sack” Left Off

By Sally Deering 

On the HBO award-winning TV series THE SOPRANOS (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 River View Observer 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.

Continue reading LIFE AFTER SOPRANOS Actor Vincent Curatola Picks up where Johnny ‘Sack” Left Off

Actor’s Actor James Gandolfini Dies at 51 While on Vacation in Italy

James Gandolfini from Westwood NJ
James Gandolfini
from Westwood NJ

James Gandolfini the talented actor who became an Icon playing  Tony Soprano in the HBO hit series The Soprano’s died in  Italy  today of an apparent heart attack  He was 51 years old.

Born James J. Gandolfini Jr. on September 18, 1961 in Westwood, New Jersey  Gandolfini became best known for his  role as the troubled, family tormented  Don in the Soprano’s.

Gandolfini had an impressive body of work as an actor dating back to 1987 when he first  played an  orderly in a movie entitled Shock, Shock, Shock.

He debuted on Broadway in  “A Street Car Named Desire in the 1992 revival with actors Jessica Lange and Alex Baldwin.

Gandolfini’s breakthrough role was that of Virgil the gay hitman in Tony Scott’s True Romance (1993)

He since went on to a illustrious career and starred in movies : Angie (1994) Get Shorty (1995) The Last Castle (2001) The Mexican (2001) All the King’s Men (2006) 12 Angry Men (TV movie 1999) and other memorable movies and plays.

Tributes on twitter from famous celebrities all seem to have a common message about Gandolfini that he was a good guy and a marvelous talent that will be sorely missed.

In a interview with James Lipton on Bravo TV’s Actor Studio, Gandolfini  when asked by Lipton  ” What do you want to hear God say when you get to the pearly gates?” Gandolfini answered “Take over for a while , I’ll be right back.”

James Gandolfini leaves a wife- Amanda Lin  and  a one year old son, and a son Michael from a previous marriage .