Running from 1999 to 2007 , it’s fair to say that The Sopranos somewhat laid down the foundations and a certain legacy for HBO shows heading forward. Here was a show rich in depth, characterization, and atmosphere, continuously pushing the boundaries and proving that television that can just as engaging and cinematic as the movies we witness on the big screen. Fronted by the now sadly departed James Gandolfini, the show focused on the trials and tribulations of Tony Soprano, a New Jersey mob boss whose personal life was just as interesting as his life within the dangerous business that he tackled day-in, day-out.
Throughout its near-decade run, we bared witness to not only the world of gangsters, mob bosses and guns, but also delved deep into the psyche of one of television’s most engaging and unhinged characters who will remain unforgettable.
Created by David Chase, the show was a Golden Globe Awards darling, notching 5 Globe wins, including Best Drama and Leading Performance honours for both James Gandolfini and Edie Falco. It also swooped in to grab a host of awards over multiple years at the Emmy Awards, solidifying its place among the best television shows of all time.
Sadly all things have to come to an end, and 2007 saw the show come to a fade-to-black close and leave behind a huge legacy and level to which other shows could only hope to reach. The question is – where are the cast of the show now? Well, let us tell you.
15. John Ventimiglia – Artie
Currently residing in Brooklyn with his daughters, John Ventimiglia is one of the Sopranos gang who has continued his career within television and the acting profession. Ventimiglia starred as Tony Soprano’s childhood friend, Artie Bucco, a restaurant owner who was often the butt of the jokes within the series. He was a man who would often make many mistakes but would never learn from them, even with his character stretching from the first episode to the last.
Since the closure of The Sopranos, the actor has moved on to star in shows such as The Good Wife and Blue Bloods, dabbled in some writing, and even worked on some theatre productions along the way. Through the years, he has admitted that many roles have been offered to him for simple ‘Italian restaurant owners.’
In addition to TV work, Ventimiglia starred in the Michael Shannon-led movie, The Iceman, telling the story of hitman Richard Kuklinski.
14. Joseph R. Gannascoli – Vito
Despite making his mark as Vito in the later stretch of the show as one of the only closeted gay gangsters to have ever appeared on screen, Joseph R. Gannascoli has always remained passionate about cooking and nowadays that is where his passion for work lies.
In 2006, he published a crime novel that was clearly food-based in A Meal to Die For: A Culinary Novel of Crime, while he has also created a line of pasta sauces and food under the name ‘Sauce Boss.’
Not content with just that, he has a line of Cigars called Cugine and was the creator of Bottle skinz, the water coolers licensed by the NFL, NHL and NCAA. Following the death of James Gandolfini, Gannascoli was actually criticized by some of his former cohorts for being too vocal about the passing of a man he wasn’t particularly close to.
13. Dan Grimaldi – Patsy
Having played Patsy Parisi (and twin brother Philly) in The Sopranos, Dan Grimaldi served as the accountant to Tony Soprano and his gang, also procuring fine suits and occasionally getting his hands dirty when called upon. While the actor still dips his toes now and again in the acting pool, Grimaldi has somewhat replicated his character Patsy’s intelligence and applied it to his main job in life nowadays, as a mathematics professor.
Impressively, having clearly ensured that his education is to the highest possible level, the man has a Ph.D. in data processing, a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, and a master’s degree in operations research. Now that is one smart cookie who has clearly gone on to a rather different yet fruitful future beyond the television show.
12. Steve Schirripa – Bobby
One of the more noticeable faces from The Sopranos, Steve Schirripia has seen his career go from one project to the next as the years have passed by. Not only has Schirripia starred in shows such as The Secret Life Of The American Teenager and various different Discovery Channel shows, he has also delivered regular voice work for the Open Season movie franchise.
In addition to these, he has starred in a theatre production of Guys and Dolls and even has his own line of sauces under the name Uncle Steve’s Italian Specialities Group. Not only that, but he has even gotten himself published, with a book series named A Goomba’s Guide To Life and another book that focuses on parenting, called Big Daddy’s Rules.
11. Drea de Matteo – Adriana
Another member of the Sopranos crew who won themselves an Emmy, Drea de Matteo played the part of Adriana La Cerva, fiancée of Christopher Moltisanti. In her time within the show, Matteo’s character slowly turned from an initially money-grabbing woman to someone rather accomplished and versed in her husband’s determination to stay at the top of the mobster chain.
Since her rise to the fame through the show, de Matteo has seen plenty more television show appearances, having joined Matt Le Blanc in Friends spin-off, Joey, and also having recurring roles in Desperate Housewives, Sons of Anarchy and the more recent show, Shades of Blue. Aside from her television career, de Matteo is engaged to Whitesnake bass guitarist Michael Devin and sadly lost her home in New York last year due to a gas explosion which affected a number of buildings.
10. Aida Turturro – Janice
An individual who continues to work on the public awareness of rheumatoid arthritis, Aida Turturro made her name as Janice Soprano. She was known as one of the most manipulative and frustrating characters within the whole show and certainly wanted much more than she could ever possibly have in the world of Tony Soprano and his crew. The cousin of film star John Turturro, she has starred in episodes for the shows Blue Bloods, Medium and Curb Your Enthusiasm, while also reuniting with Edie Falco for an installment of Nurse Jackie.
9. Jamie-Lynn Sigler – Meadow
The elder of the Soprano children, Jamie-Lynn Sigler has since sprung up in plenty of other television shows since her evolution in The Sopranos. She played herself in Entourage for 13 episodes, while also making appearances in How I Met Your Mother and Ugly Betty.
Sigler is happily married to Cutter Dykstra, the son of former MLB star Lenny Dyskstra, and the pair have a son. Earlier this year, she announced that she has multiple sclerosis and had been challenged with it for no less than 15 years. When discussing the issue, Sigler also confirmed that it was slowly affecting her mobility, with her last time actually running being in her last scenes in The Sopranos.
8. Robert Iler – AJ
Following his role as A.J. Soprano in the HBO show, Robert Iler has somewhat led a life that could be loosely compared with the individuals within the Soprano circle. During the show’s run, he was arrested for armed robbery and possession of marijuana, and in 2005 he was on the scene when underground poker club Ace Point was the target of a police raid.
These days, little is known of Iler’s activities, but his last television appearance was in 2009 via an episode of Law & Order, somewhat ironically following his brushes with the law. He currently resides in Las Vegas and confirmed in recent years that he rarely looks at a script, instead content with his life as a poker player.
7. Tony Sirico – Paulie
Since playing the part of Paulie ‘Walnuts’ Gualtieri, Tony Sirico has worked on various projects that have mostly gone under the radar. Despite this, he did recently enjoy a starring role in Family Guy, having taken on the mantle of the Griffin family dog, following the demise of popular character Brian in 2013. Taking over the pet role as Vinny the dog, Sirico would last just a few episodes, but would return as himself following an altercation with Stewie, who would label Italians as “ridiculous people.”
Most recently, he also starred in Woody Allen’s Café Society, which starred Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart, and is working with the director on one of his next projects which is currently untitled.
6. Dominic Chianese – Junior
At the grand old age of 85, Dominic Chianese is still making his way within the industry, following his stint as Junior Soprano, uncle to lead character Tony. Junior’s journey within the show eventually ends with sadness as Tony has to come to terms with his uncle being consumed by dementia. He has since starred in an impressive line of hit shows, including The Good Wife, Boardwalk Empire and the Glenn Close-led Damages, as well as forging himself a music career.
He released his first album, consisting of American and Italian songs, in 2000, while he followed this up with album number two in 2003, which featured 16 Neapolitan songs. Aside from his albums, Chianese also looks to provide for others through the charity Joy Through Art, bringing music to nursing homes for the elderly.
5. Steven Van Zandt – Silvio
Despite being known for his role as Silvio Dante in the show, Steven Van Zandt is one actor who is more aligned with his musical side, having actually made his name in music prior to the HBO show. With that in mind, Van Zandt has, since the end of The Sopranos, gone back to his roots and continues his work with Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band. In 2014, Van Zandt was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as part of the band, and in 2009 he actually performed at the grandest stage of them all, the Super Bowl.
4. Michael Imperioli – Christopher
Having written some of the early episodes of the show and shone brightly as Christopher Moltisanti, it was always a dead certainty that Michael Imperioli would continue his impressive career within the industry. Moving on from The Sopranos, he also starred in Californication, Hawaii Five-O, and Mad Dogs, while he has recently been confirmed to star in the second season of Lucifer as the Angel Uriel. Imperioli was also a part of Spike Lee’s remake of the Korean masterpiece Oldboy.
3. Lorraine Bracco – Dr. Melfi
Lorraine Bracco played the pivotal role of Dr. Jennifer Melfi, Tony Soprano’s psychiatrist. As very much the only person that Tony would reveal all of his thoughts and secrets to, Melfi would be an ever-present feature of the show and certainly presented a wonderful actress in Bracco. Having starred in every episode of the show’s run, Bracco has since seen various television show appearances fill her schedule, with her most notable being in the TNT show, Rizzoli and Isles. In the show she played the mother of one half of the title duo, Angela Rizzoli, which focuses on a pair tasked with solving crimes in Boston. She has also provided the voice of Dr. Janet in Will Arnett’s animated Netflix comedy, BoJack Horseman.
2. Edie Falco – Carmela
The matriarch of the Soprano family and multi-award winning actress because of that very role as Carmela Soprano, Edie Falco has seen plenty of success in her career through the years. Following the conclusion of The Sopranos, Falco continued her reign as one of the most underrated actresses in the business as she led Showtime’s hit show, Nurse Jackie, on a successful run from 2009 to 2015.
She has now amassed a hugely impressive four Emmys, five SAGs and two Golden Globes through the years and it’s unsurprising that these days she is taking things a little lighter. Despite a very public battle with cancer, Falco is still working on various projects, with TV mini-series Horace and Pete her most notable venture of late.
1. James Gandolfini – Tony Soprano
The cornerstone of the show and an undeniably rich and refreshing talent, James Gandolfini sadly died of a heart attack in 2013, leaving behind an unforgettable acting legacy. Having starred in all 86 episodes of the hit HBO show, Gandolfini also made his presence felt in a movie career that spanned over 25 years, marking his mark in movies such as 8mm, The Mexican, Zero Dark Thirty, the hearty Enough Said and the incredible Killing Them Softly, opposite Brad Pitt. Incredibly, Gandolfini’s name still lives on, with his latest posthumous recognition coming as an executive producer for HBO show, The Night Of.
A powerhouse in stature and in acting talent, Gandolfini will never be forgotten and to this day he gains new fans when younger audiences binge-watch their way through one of the greatest shows to ever grace television screens.
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