Star of ‘So­pra­nos’ pre­quel re­veals key de­tail

Movie cen­ters on a char­ac­ter never seen in TV series

Albany Times Union - - TV / ENTERTAINMENT - By John Carucci

The star of the up­com­ing “The So­pra­nos” pre­quel says a young Tony So­prano will be a part of the film — but the ac­tor had good rea­son to be care­ful about how much else he re­vealed about “The Many Saints of Ne­wark.”

Alessan­dro Nivola talked to The As­so­ci­ated Press about the project on the red car­pet Wed­nes­day be­fore a panel dis­cus­sion led by cre­ator David Chase to cel­e­brate the 20th an­niver­sary of “The So­pra­nos” in New York.

“I guess I got to be kind of dis­creet about it, so David Chase doesn’t kill me,” Nivola said. “I’m play­ing Dickie Molti­santi, who is the cen­tral char­ac­ter in the movie, and he is Christo­pher Molti­santi’s dad.”

Christo­pher Molti­santi, who was played by Michael Im­pe­ri­oli in the series, was a pro­tege of Tony So­prano, the New Jersey mob boss por­trayed by James Gan­dolfini.

Though the elder Molti­santi never ap­peared in the series, he is of­ten men­tioned as part of Christo­pher’s back­story. The father was gunned down when Christo­pher was young and Nivola said the film will ex­plore the in­ter­lock­ing his­tory of Dickie Molti­santi and So­prano.

“Tony will be a char­ac­ter in the film, and as was men­tioned through­out ‘The So­pra­nos’ series, my char­ac­ter was an im­por­tant per­son in his life, and it ex­am­ines that re­la­tion­ship as well,” Nivola said.

The film be­gins in 1967 with the back­drop of the race ri­ots that tore through Ne­wark, N.J.

Nivola said racial ten­sion is “a big part of the story.”

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