The Sopranos’ Tony Sirico Dead at 79

Sirico manager Bob McGowan confirmed the news, calling him an "honest and good customer" who "always helps people in need." No cause of death has been announced.

A native New Yorker, Sirico had a real-life run-in with the law when a visit to a troupe full of ex-convicts inspired him to pursue an acting career.

He played a series of gangster roles in films like GoodFellas and Bullets Over Broadway before landing the role that defined his acting career: that of the hard-nosed Paulie Gualtieri.

Sirico originally auditioned for the role of Uncle Junior, but the role went to Dominic Chianese. Sopranos creator David Chase then offered Siric the role of Paulie,

but Sirico will only agree if Chase promises that the character will not be a "rat". Sirico went on to appear in all six seasons of the Emmy-winning classic.

Sirico appeared in all six episodes of the Emmy-winning classic and won several Screen Actors Guild awards as part of the Sopranos ensemble.

The Sopranos, Sirico appeared in episodes of Chuck and The Grinder and lent his voice to episodes of Family Guy and American Dad!.

Michael Imperioli, who co-starred with Siric in The Sopranos as Christopher Moltisanti, paid tribute to him on Instagram.


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