'The Sopranos' Creator David Chase Details Tony's Return in the Prequel Movie
As the HBO series gears up to celebrate its 20th anniversary, creator David Chase is shedding light on the upcoming movie. Speaking with Deadline, Chase addressed the question every diehard fan wants answered — will Tony Soprano make an appearance?
And the answer is yes! Tony Soprano will return to screens... but as a younger version of himself. Unfortunately, any hope for a sequel was squashed when the Tony Soprano, James Gandolfini, passed away in 2013. But in The Many Saints of Newark, which will focus on racial tension between African Americans and Italian Americans in Newark in the '70s, highlights the early days of the New Jersey mob.
The film will also include another Sopranos connection with the inclusion of Christopher's (Michael Imperioli) father Dickie Moltisanti, portrayed by Alessandro Nivola. Dickie will serve as the link to the original series as a mob soldier during the time period. Fans of the series will remember that Christopher's father was killed in the '70s by a shifty cop, and Christopher later sought revenge.
Chase says he became intrigued with telling this story after learning about life in Newark during the period. "I was interested in Newark and life in Newark at that time," he explains. "I used to go to down there every Saturday night for dinner with my grandparents. But the thing that interested me most was Tony's boyhood. I was interested in exploring that."
But it wasn't always that way for Chase. He reveals he wrestled with the idea of a movie for a long time before eventually deciding to proceed with it.
"I was against [the movie] for a long time and I'm still very worried about it, but I became interested in Newark, where my parents came from, and where the riots took place... I was just interested in the whole Newark riot thing. I started thinking about those events and organized crime, and I just got interested in mixing those two elements," he concludes.
As The Many Saints of Newark shapes up to be a Sopranos fan's dream, the original series continues to be celebrated. The Sopranos changed television when it premiered in January 1999. After Tony Soprano, antiheroes became part of the pop culture fabric, including characters such as Breaking Bad's Walter White and Dexter Morgan from Dexter.