Featuring Michael Gandolfini as a Young Tony, Jon Bernthal, and more.
Before he auditioned for The Many Saints of Newark, Michael Gandolfini had never seen a minute of The Sopranos. "I was just a kid when he was making it. I would go to the set and ask him what it was about, and he’d say, ‘Oh, it’s about this guy who’s in the mob and kind of goes to therapy,'" Michael told Esquire of his late father James Gandolfini, who played Tony Soprano—one of the most iconic TV characters of all time. Now, Michael is playing a younger version of Tony in the upcoming Sopranos prequel, which is currently filming in New York and New Jersey.
Despite COVID-19 halting Hollywood productions across the globe, The Many Saints of Newark has returned for reshoots. In late-September, the production began reshoots in New Jersey, with fake snow and vintage cars outside of Holsten's Brookdale Confectionary in Bloomfield.
"The hardest part of this whole process was watching the show for the first time.” Michael told Esquire of inhabiting his father's beloved character. “It was an intense process. Because, as an actor, I had to watch this guy who created the role, to look for mannerisms, voice, all those things I would have to echo. But then I’d also be seeing my father. I think what made it so hard was I had to do it alone. I was just sitting alone in my dark apartment, watching my dad all the time. I started having crazy dreams. I had one where I auditioned for David and I looked down at my hands, and they were my dad’s hands.”
After the COVID delay, The Many Saints of Newark is now scheduled to come out in March of 2021.