James Gandolfini Passes Away at 51

(Left to right) Executive Producer / Music Supervisor Steve Van Zandt, Producer / Writer / Director David Chase and James Gandolfini at the New York premiere of NOT FADE AWAY at the Museum of Modern Art on December 18, 2012. Photo Courtesy of Paramount Pictures
James Gandolfini, best known for playing mob boss Tony Soprano on the hit HBO series The Sopranos, has died of a massive heart attack. Gandolfini was reportedly on vacation in Italy when he suffered the heart attack.
Gandolfini was most recently seen on the big screen in the critically acclaimed movie Zero Dark Thirty playing the director of the CIA and as the father of a struggling musician in Not Fade Away where he reunited with Sopranos creator David Chase.
Among the many celebrities expressing their thoughts about the passing of James Gandolfini was Damon Lindelof who perhaps expressed best what his many fans are thinking:
“James Gandolfini. You created an icon. And you cut to black way too abruptly. Thank you, and rest in peace.” @DamonLindelof
Gandolfini kept out of the media spotlight, keeping his personal life as private as possible. He married Deborah Lin in 2008 and the couple had a baby girl last October. He’s also survived by a son with his ex-wife, Marcy Wudarski. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this very difficult time.
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Edited to add:
“He was a genius. Anyone who saw him even in the smallest of his performances knows that,” stated The Sopranos‘ David Chase. “He is one of the greatest actors of this or any time. A great deal of that genius resided in those sad eyes. I remember telling him many times, ‘You don’t get it. You’re like Mozart.’ There would be silence at the other end of the phone. For Deborah and Michael and Liliana this is crushing. And it’s bad for the rest of the world. He wasn’t easy sometimes. But he was my partner, he was my brother in ways I can’t explain and never will be able to explain.”
Statement by Edie Falco:
“I am shocked and devastated by Jim’s passing. He was a man of tremendous depth and sensitivity, with a kindness and generosity beyond words. I consider myself very lucky to have spent 10 years as his close colleague. My heart goes out to his family. As those of us in his pretend one hold on to the memories of our intense and beautiful time together. The love between Tony and Carmela was one of the greatest I’ve ever known.”

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