Mr. Tony Sirico was the ultimate tough guy, and in the wake of the news of the passing of James Gandolfini Wednesday, the other The Sopranos star’s name is the number two search on Google under “James Gandolfini.”
Genaro Anthony “Tony” Sirico, Jr. is a popular character actor who is most remembered for his role as Paulie Gualtieri in The Sopranos. He was also a real life “goodfella,” who grew up in New York’s rough Bensonhurst area and had been arrested 28 times going back to stealing nickles as a kid. Later in life, he would play Frankie “The Wop” Basil, in Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas, before later being selected to play Paulie Gualtieri in The Sopranos.
Upon learning of Mr. Gandolfini’s passing, Sirico said:
“He was one of my best friends in life. He helped me with my career and I’m going to miss him. He’s part of my family.”