July 8, 2022: ‘Sopranos’ Cast Mourns ‘Paulie Walnuts’

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Michael Imperioli, James Gandolfini, Tony Sirico and Steve Van Zandt

Tony Sirico, who played Paulie Walnuts on the much-honored HBO TV series The Sopranos with humor and ferocity, is being mourned by his fellow cast members. Sirico died July 8, 2022, at age 79 at an assisted living home in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

Michael Imperioli, who portrayed fellow gangster, Christopher Moltisanti, wrote on his Instagram account, “Tony was like no one else: he was as tough, as loyal and as big hearted as anyone i’ve ever known.”

Steve Van Zandt, the E Street Band member who is also well known for his role as Silvio Dante, called Sirico “a larger than life character on and off screen.”

Lorraine Bracco, who played psychiatrist Jennifer Melfi, described her late cast mate as “a standup guy who always had my back.”

Jamie Lynn Sigler, who played Tony and Carmela Soprano’s daughter, Meadow, wrote, “I have never been able to walk into a room that you were in without you giving me an enormous hug, drenching me in your cologne, and making sure I knew any man that came near me would have to answer to you first.”

Robert Iler, who played the Sopranos’ son A.J. recalled how Sirico looked out for him, when he was a pre-teen in the first season. “Once we did the second or third episode, Tony just came over to me and said, ‘Hey, uh, if anyone ever… bothers you, or anybody says anything, you tell Uncle Tony, okay?’”

Their full tributes are below as are ones from fellow Sopranos cast members Joe Panotliano (Ralph Cifaretto) and Steve Schirripa (Bobby Baccalieri).

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  1. 122intheshade
    #1 122intheshade 9 July, 2022, 00:22

    The Pine Barrens episode was the best. RIP Paulie.

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