The entire entertainment industry is still in shock after learning of James Gandolfini”s sudden death yesterday (June 19), and the folks over at The Sopranos have released statements of grief.
Creator David Chase lamented, He was a genius. Anyone who saw him even in the smallest of his performances knows that. 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 dont get it. Youre like Mozart. There would be silence at the other end of the phone. For [his wife Deborah Lin] and [children] Michael and Liliana this is crushing. And its bad for the rest of the world. He wasnt easy sometimes. But he was my partner, he was my brother in ways I cant explain and never will be able to explain.
Meanwhile Brad Grey, the executive producer also weighed in- Jimmy was one of the most talented, authentic and vulnerable actors of our time. He was unorthodox and truly special in so many ways. He had the sex appeal of Steve McQueen or Brando in his prime as well as the comedic genius of Jackie Gleason. Im proud to have been his friend and grateful for the extraordinary years I was lucky enough to work with him. My heart and support goes out to his wonderful and loving family.
Costar Lorraine Bracco shared, We lost a giant today. I am utterly heartbroken, and Steve Schirripa noted, Jimmy was a dear friend and like a brother to me. He was a great actor and a great father. I will miss him terribly. I am very sad.
Paulie Gualtieri actor Tony Sirico added, He was one of my best friends in life. He helped me with my career and Im going to miss him. Hes part of my family, and Steven Van Zandt declared, I have lost a brother and a best friend. The world has lost one of the greatest actors of all time. Maureen and I send our deepest sympathy and love to Deborah, Michael, Lily, and all of Jimmys family.
Even the band Journey, whose hit Dont Stop Believing was featured in the series finale, issued a statement- Its truly an honor to have been able to share one of the greatest moments ever in TV history with James Gandolfini. He was an amazing actor taken way too young and hell be missed. Our condolences go out to his family.