James Gandolfini Dead at 51

Published 2 years ago by , Updated February 24th, 2014 at 11:14 am,

james gandolfini rip James Gandolfini Dead at 51

James Gandolfini, who will forever be remembered as Tony Soprano on The Sopranos, has died at the age of 51. According to HBO, the cause of death is believed to be a heart attack. The actor was apparently on vacation in Italy at the time of his death. He is survived by his wife Deborah Lin and their 8-month-old daughter.

The New Jersey-born actor first garnered attention for enforcer/tough guy roles in True RomanceGet Shorty, and other films in the late 1990s before finally breaking out in 1999, using his imposing physicality and a grounded, tough, and layered style to fully inhabit Tony Soprano, a role that won him 3 Emmy awards.

After The Sopranos came to a close in 2007, Gandolfini seemingly took an active role in cultivating a diverse and rich resume, mixing independently minded films like In the Loop, Welcome to the Rileys, and Not Fade Away (which served as Sopranos‘ creator David Chase’s feature directorial debut) with authoritative roles in larger films like The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 and Zero Dark Thirty. He also appeared on Broadway with the 2009 Tony nominated performance in God of Carnage.

A committed supporter of The Wounded Warrior Project, Gandolfini also made two documentaries – 2007′s Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraq and 2010′s Wartorn: 1861-2010 – that focused on wounded soldiers and posttraumatic stress disorder for HBO.

james gandolfini rip sopranos James Gandolfini Dead at 51

Gandolfini’s relationship with HBO, which included Hemingway and Gellhorn (which the actor produced) and Cinema Verite (which he starred in), was set to continue with Criminal Justice, a 7-episode event series adaptation of Peter Moffat’s UK original. In the series, Gandolfini was set to star as Jack Stone, an attorney. Gandolfini was also developing Big Dead Place and Eating With the Enemy: How I Waged Peace With North Korea From My BBQ Shack in Hackensack with HBO, and he was set to produce the Taxi-22 adaptation over at CBS.

Obviously – and secondarily – those projects may all be in doubt due to this loss, but with a great many of us intellectually doubled over, it goes without saying that everything comes into perspective at a moment like this, where a 51-year-old man is gone, a daughter is without her father, a wife is without her husband, and an audience is without a magnetized presence that seized every opportunity to make us remember him.

As I said, James Gandolfini will forever be remembered as Tony Soprano. Not for playing a mobster, but for being that man, for transforming into him, and for – as the adage goes – “turning a television into a window,” a window through which we could watch him seduce, frighten, and amaze us.

An icon, with an ocean of accomplishment and an undeniable legacy as one of our best actors; our thoughts and prayers go out to James Gandolfini’s loved ones.


In Memoriam: James Gandolfini, September 18, 1961 – June 19, 2013

Source: THR

Follow Jason Tabrys on Twitter @jtabrys
TAGS: Obituaries
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  1. R.I.P he will be missed

  2. Damn, what a loss.

  3. RIP

  4. Goodbye sleep well

  5. Well written article. Rest in peace, James. Never saw The Sopranos but I’ve heard great things. I’m sure you were a great actor and a great man. Thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.

    • I too never watched the Sopranos…but knew of his face and name. And to die so young. R.I.P

    • Nor I but saw him in Welcome To The Riley’s, liked him in that.

      Rest in peace.

  6. A shocking end to a life. An untimely death is always the hardest to accept.
    Even with James Gandolfini’s iconic accomplishments his talents were yet
    to be fully realized and there was great potential still to be fulfilled.

    And so he leaves us wanting more. And remembering what he gave us.
    Reminding because you never know your time, you too can run out of time.

  7. I’m devastated! Just the other day I was planning on re-watching The Sopranos. Rest in Peace sir. You’ll be missed!

  8. R.I.P.-He is known for his Sopranos work, but the HBO documentaries he did about the soldiers was very well done.

  9. I’m genuinely shocked. I’ve literally just finished watching a couple of episodes of The Sopranos, got on the site and saw this. He gave a complex, layered and totally convincing performance in a show that altered the face of television, but all that pales next to leaving behind a child that young, and her mother. Condolences to all his family and friends.

  10. He was also great in “The Last Castle” with Robert Redford.

    Truly, a sad passing…

  11. R.I.P. James, my condolences to his family and friends he will be missed.

  12. Tony Soprano sleeps with the fishes. What terrible news. RIP Mr. Gandolfini.

  13. So sad. Last seen him in Killing Them Softly. I was thinking upon hearing the news how many people involved with my favorite film , True Romance, are now gone. Dennis Hopper, Tony Scott and now Gandolfini. RIP

  14. RIP Big Guy

  15. RIP Gandolfini. You will always be remembered.

  16. This shocked me. I never expected him to go this soon :(


  17. That just made me cry some. Terrible news to wake up to. My heart is with his wife and new daughter. Absolute legend. The sopranos is without doubt my favourite show of all time.

    • Made me sad too. I love a lot of movies and there are a lot of great TV shows, but I too think Soprano’s is the best.

  18. You will be missed Mr Gandolfini.
    Rest in peace.

  19. Always thought that he would be good for the role of Wilson Fisk aka The kingpin for a new Daredevil movie. R.I.P MR Gandolfini. Taken from us too soon.

  20. A legend, I’ll never look at ducks the same way again.

  21. R.I.P

  22. Rest In Peace. You were truly a unique actor. You totally became whatever you depicted on screen and made us belive you were that person. A rare trait in todays Hollywod. Though we never met you truly touched my heart. You leave us too soon. The bell tolls and another angel is born.

  23. RIP. The Sopranos is my second favorite tv show of all time.

  24. :(

  25. Man this is sad. I’m a HUGE Sopranos fan…RIP

  26. To me we lost way more than an actor…we lost a guy who was a huge military/veteran supporter and did great things with the wounded warrior project.

    We’ll miss you James/Tony. RIP

  27. What a sad loss. A great actor who was ripped from this world way too soon.

    Don’t Stop Believing,
    Hold on to that feeling,
    Don’t Stop……….

  28. We all come to the garden alone

  29. F******g pasta takes one away from us