HBO’s President of Programming reveals that he hasn’t ruled out a revival of The Sopranos. During a TCA interview, Casey Bloys spoke about the legacy of the iconic mafia-themed series. In the upcoming prequel movie, The Many Saints of Newark, Michael Gandolfini plays a younger version of Tony Soprano, a character made famous by his late father, James Gandolfini.
Created by David Chase, The Sopranos premiered on Jan. 10, 1999. During its six-season run, the series explored the trials and tribulations of the Soprano family, both at home and within its New Jersey gangland setting. Edie Falco portrays Tony’s wife Carmela, with Robert Iler and Jamie-Lynn Sigler co-starring as the Soprano children. During the early- to mid-2000s, The Sopranos was considered “Prestige TV” and set a high bar for future HBO series like Game of Thrones, all the while complementing the highly regarded series The Wire that aired from 2002 to 2008. Sadly, The Sopranos’ star Gandolfini passed away in 2013 at age 51. Approximately five years later, Chase decided to move forward with a prequel movie that’s set during the Newark riots of 1967. In January 2019, a young Tony Soprano character was confirmed for The Many Saints of Newark, and the younger Gandolfini was cast less than two weeks later.
Per Deadline, HBO could potentially develop a new Sopranos series based on the events depicted in The Many Saints of Newark. According to the aforementioned Bloys, “There are no plans, there is no discussions about it, but (Michael) is a really good actor, we had him on The Deuce. There is nothing on the table at the moment but I will stay open.” Though Gandolfini is still a relatively inexperienced actor, he portrayed the character Joey Dwyer in five episodes during the first two seasons of The Deuce. For The Deuce season 3 - set to premiere on September 9 - he’ll appear in five more episodes. Gandolfini also recently completed filming for the feature film Youngest, directed by Nat Wolff, the younger brother of Hereditary star Alex Wolff. Gandolfini will also appear in the upcoming family film The Boy, the Dog and the Clown.
As for The Many Saints of Newark, the film is currently scheduled for Sept. 25, 2020 release. Alan Taylor will direct, this coming after he previously helmed feature films like Thor: The Dark World and Terminator Genisys. In the past, Taylor directed episodes for acclaimed televisions series such as Game of Thrones, Mad Men, Lost, Deadwood, The West Wing, and The Sopranos, among many others. Last January, Jon Bernthal and Vera Farmiga joined the cast for The Many Saints of Newark, along with Corey Stoll and Billy Magnussen shortly after. In February, Goodfellas actor Ray Liotta was announced. Since then, Umbrella Academy’s John Magaro and Hamilton’s Leslie Odom Jr. have rounded out the cast.
While The Many Saints of Newark’s success may not depend on the quality of Michael Gandolfini’s performance, it could very well determine whether HBO greenlights a spinoff series. But given that The Sopranos creator, Chase, is behind the prequel movie, and that the younger Gandolfini is indeed a working actor, it seems plausible that HBO would invest in some type of reboot.