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These tributes first appeared in the July 19 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
In the wake of The Sopranos star’s death from a June 19 heart attack in Rome, his friends, collaborators and admirers — from actors Jeff Daniels and Dominic Chianese to top HBO executives Michael Lombardo and Richard Plepler — look back on a titan of the craft who changed the business of television.
David Chase on the Last Time He Saw James Gandolfini (Q&A)
The Sopranos mastermind saw his star with wife, Deborah, and their new baby at a party just before Easter: “Everything Jim did had a family feeling to it.”
Jeff Daniels: James Gandolfini Pushed for ‘God of Carnage’ Raises
The Newsroom star, who shared the stage with Marcia Gay Harden and Hope Davis, recalls when the show’s Broadway run was extended, the star pushed for equitable pay: “He said, ‘Everybody gets paid the same.'”
Chris Albrecht: James Gandolfini Stood With Cast in ‘Sopranos’ Contract Dispute
The Starz CEO and former head of HBO remembers how a threat to fire others brought about a new deal with the star in 24 hours.
Marcia Gay Harden: James Gandolfini Helped Me Through My Divorce
The God of Carnage co-star recalled the “real mutual warmth” between them: “James was an absolute rock for me.”
Vince Gilligan: Without Tony Soprano There Would Be No Walter White
The Breaking Bad creator/exec producer recalls, after meeting James Gandolfini, “being struck by the disconnect between the scary mob boss and the warm and friendly man who played him.”
HBO’s Richard Plepler: James Gandolfini Had ‘Compassion for the Underdog’
The network’s CEO says he used his experience as a struggling actor to “evince the pathos of his characters.”
Patricia Arquette: James Gandolfini ‘Slept in His Suit to Stay in Character’
His True Romance co-star remembers the late actor’s commitment to his roles and his “flawless” work as Tony Soprano.
Annabella Sciorra: Working With James Gandolfini Was ‘Once-in-a-Lifetime’ Experience
His Sopranos co-star says the late actor “made it safe enough for me to go out on a limb and delve into the depths of insanity, intimacy and violence right along with him without question or fear.”
Drea de Matteo: James Gandolfini Was a ‘King Through and Through’
His Sopranos co-star praises him as “one of the best actors of our time” who also was “generous, real and humble.”
‘Sopranos’ Star Dominic Chianese Recalls Parisian Night With James Gandolfini
The show’s Uncle Junior jokes the image of Gandolfini — wearing just underwear and a robe — “ruined” a romantic fantasy he was daydreaming about in Paris.
HBO’s Michael Lombardo: James Gandolfini Was ‘Ready to Jump’ Back Into TV
The exec says the late actor had been working on Big Dead Place, a show about the U.S. Antarctic program, and was ready to “commit to a series and character that he hadn’t committed to since Tony Soprano.”
Edie Falco: Onscreen Love With James Gandolfini ‘One of the Greatest I’ve Ever Known’
The late actor’s wife on The Sopranos says he “was a man of tremendous depth and sensitivity.”
Jamie-Lynn Sigler: James Gandolfini Made You Feel ‘Everything Would Be All Right’
The Sopranos co-star says she spent a decade “studying and admiring one of the most brilliant actors.”
Wounded Warrior Project Co-Founder Remembers James Gandolfini’s Charitable Side
Al Giordano, who worked with the actor for a 2007 HBO documentary on wounded soldiers, remembers when Gandolfini spent “an entire morning” at the Army’s burn ward.
‘Taxi-22’ Producer: James Gandolfini ‘Had an Unmatched Detector of Creative Integrity’
Clark Peterson, who was producing the upcoming CBS project with Gandolfini, reflects on the Sopranos star’s “passion, smarts and humility.”
Roger Bart: Why I Encouraged James Gandolfini to Pursue Acting
The Tony winner tells THR how getting to know the future Sopranos star made him realize that “New Jersey needs its own Gene Hackman.”
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