James Gandolfini Poster

Quotes (22)

  • I'm a neurotic mess. I'm really basically just like a 260-pound Woody Allen.
  • I'm an actor... I do a job and I go home. Why are you interested in me? You don't ask a truck driver about his job.
  • I was voted best-looking kid in high school but, as you can see, things changed. I used to say I was a 260-pound Woody Allen. You can make that 295-pound now.
  • [on why he rarely does interviews] I just don't think I'm that interesting. I don't think what I have to say is that interesting. To hear me go, "Blah, blah, blah, blah.".
  • [on his reaction to The Sopranos (1999) pilot script] I thought, I've never been the lead before. They're gonna hire somebody else. But I knew I could do it. I have small amounts of "Mr. Soprano" in me. I was 35, a lunatic, a madman.
  • [on ending The Sopranos (1999)] It's been a great opportunity, but I don't have much trepidation about it ending. I think it's more than time. Part of the fun of acting is the research, finding out about other people. As much as I've explored this guy, I don't know what else to really do with him. I've been in one place for 10 years. That's enough. It's time for me to do other things.
  • Alan Alda was with M*A*S*H (1972) so long, and now you see him, that's not there that much anymore. In my mind, you work hard, you'll be fine. Everybody's got their baggage.
  • Like I always say, I'm standing on my parents' shoulders; they allowed me to do this silly job.
  • I love hearing people laugh. Especially in New York, and especially now. To hear somebody out there just belly-laughing.
  • [on Tony Soprano, his character on The Sopranos (1999)]: I never think about him, ever.
  • I watch stupid comedies. Role Models (2008). I love them. The Rocker (2008). I love that. I like idiotic comedies.
  • [on the final episode of The Sopranos (1999)] When I first saw the ending, I said, "What the fuck?" I mean, after all I went through, all this death, and then it's over like that? But after I had a day to sleep, I just sat there and said, "That's perfect."
  • [on his The Sopranos (1999) co-star, Edie Falco] I'm still in love with Edie. And, of course, I love my wife, but I'm in love with Edie. I don't know if I'm in love with Carmela or Edie or both. I'm in love with her.
  • I'm much more comfortable doing smaller things. I like them. I like the way they're shot; they're shot quickly.
  • [on acting] It is an odd way to make a living. Putting someone else's pants on and pretending to be someone else is occasionally, as you grow older, horrifying.
  • I dabbled a little bit in acting in high school and then I forgot about it completely. And then at about twenty-five I went to a class. I don't think anybody in my family thought it was an intelligent choice. I don't think anybody thought I'd succeed, which is understandable. I think they were just happy that I was doing something.
  • [on The Sopranos (1999) project] I read it. I liked it. I thought it was good. But I thought they would have to hire some good-looking guy, not George Clooney but some Italian George Clooney, and that would be that. But they called me and they said can I meet David Chase for breakfast at nine a.m. At the time, I was younger and I stayed out late a lot, and I was like, "Oh, for fuck's sake. This guy wants to eat breakfast? This guy's going to be a pain in the ass".
  • I think you cared about Tony because David was smart enough to write the Greek chorus through Dr. Melfi. So you sat there and you got to see his motives, what he was thinking, what he was trying to do, what he was trying to fix, what he was trying to become. And then you saw it didn't really work out the way he wanted it to. If you took the Melfi scenes away, you wouldn't care about this man as much, or care about anything that was happening to him.
  • We'd get accused, back then, of glamorizing mobsters, but we were all half miserable you know. I don't think the violence looks appealing at all. Everybody paid for it in a lot of ways. I heard sometimes that we were making cute, cuddly mobsters, but i know for a fact that David wrote an incredibly violent episode - the one where there's a stripper that Ralph Cifaretto beats to death - and I think that was written as a reaction to that. It's a very violent world and, you know, there's consequences. I think we showed it, and I think we showed the toll it takes on people.
  • [on David Chase and the challenges of The Sopranos (1999)] By the end, I had a lot of anger over things and I think it was just from being tired, and what in God's name would I have to be angry about? The man gave me such a gift in terms of life experience, in terms of acting experience, in terms of money, too. At the beginning, David came to the set a lot, but once it got bigger and it became this thing, you know, he was a little more standoffish. He was harder to talk to. I understand that. The pressure that he had to continue to create, to continue to do great work, was hard. Everybody starts to want something, everybody starts to call, and this one needs this, and can we talk about that? And then there's money, and so you have to pull back and try to protect yourself in a way. I had to learn it and I wasn't very good at it. But then it starts to take its toll. The first couple of years, it was easier. It wasn't such a huge deal. I've said this to him, but maybe not so clearly. I got it. He had to be a little bit of the "Great and Powerful Oz". There was no choice.
  • [on his acting teacher] I destroyed the place you know, just all that crap they have on stage... and at the end of it... she goes "See, everybody's fine. Nobody's hurt. This is what you have to do. This is what people pay for. If you don't want to do it, get off.".
  • [on the controversy surrounding the portrayal of Italian Americans associated with organized crime on The Sopranos] you're damned if you do it, you're damned if you don't. If you don't include the violence the audience think we're making the mobsters too cuddly, if you do include the violence you're making the characters too accurate and too realistic.