See James Gandolfini’s Real-Life Son as a Young Tony Soprano in the Highly Anticipated HBO Max Prequel

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See James Gandolfini’s Real-Life Son as a Young Tony Soprano in the Highly Anticipated HBO Max Prequel
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Did “The Sopranos” Kill Tony Soprano in the Series Finale?

Our first look at the Sopranos prequel film The Many Saints of Newark has arrived, and it features a bittersweet look at a young Tony Soprano. 

James Gandolfini starred as the New Jersey gangster on the acclaimed HBO series from 1999 to 2007. The actor, who won three Emmys for his role, passed away at the age of 51 in 2013 following a heart attack.

In 2019, it was revealed that James’ son Michael Gandolfini, 21, would make his film debut as a younger version of the character in The Many Saints of Newark, written by Sopranos creator David Chase and Lawrence Konner. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the film, which was originally slated for a 2020 release date, was pushed back to September 2021. The film will now stream for one month on HBO Max simultaneously with its theater release.

Michael appears as Tony in a trailer for HBO Max’s upcoming releases. He can be seen at the 20-second mark, having a confrontation on the street. 

Michael, who was born the same year that The Sopranos debuted on HBO, told Esquire in 2019 that he never watched the show growing up.

Anthony Neste/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images

The NYU student explained, “The hardest part of this whole process was watching the show for the first time. It was an intense process. Because, as an actor, I had to watch this guy who created the role, to look for mannerisms, voice, all those things I would have to echo. But then I’d also be seeing my father.”

He added, “I think what made it so hard was I had to do it alone. I was just sitting alone in my dark apartment, watching my dad all the time. I started having crazy dreams. I had one where I auditioned for David and I looked down at my hands, and they were my dad’s hands.”

Now, everyone will be able to see a bit of James in his son when The Many Saints of Newark debuts in theaters and on HBO Max on Sept. 21, 2021. watch the new clip above. 

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