Biography

It's rare that someone with character-actor looks becomes a bona fide leading man, but Gandolfini's career has been anything but ordinary. In 1992, the New Jersey-born thespian made his debuts on both Broadway (A Streetcar Named Desire) and the big screen (A Stranger Among Us). He played a mobster in the latter, which turned out to be prophetic casting. Throughout the '90s, Gandolfini carved out a solid career as a supporting player, until he became a megastar overnight as gangster Tony Soprano on HBO's The Sopranos. Along with the accolades and awards came media scrutiny of his personal life, culminating in an acrimonious divorce from Marcy Wudarski, his wife of three years. After The Sopranos wrapped in 2007, Gandolfini stayed busy with film work, appearing in the acclaimed political comedy In the Loop (2009) and lending his voice to Spike Jonze's adaptation of Where the Wild Things Are.

Fast Facts

  • Before becoming an actor, worked as a bartender, nightclub bouncer and truck driver.
  • Touted alma mater Rutgers University's football program in a 2001 commercial directed by Michael Imperioli.
  • In 2003, engaged in a bitter salary dispute with HBO that ended when he agreed to drop his lawsuit and resume work on The Sopranos.
  • Returned to the Broadway stage in 2009, giving a Tony-nominated performance in Yasmina Reza's God of Carnage.
  • Plays the trumpet and saxophone.

Awards

  • 2004, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 1999, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2003, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2000, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Winner
  • 2003, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee
  • 2002, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee
  • 2001, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2001, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2000, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2008, Emmy — Outstanding Nonfiction Special: Nominee
  • 2007, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2009, Tony — Actor (Play): Nominee
  • 2007, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2001, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2004, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 1995, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture: Nominee
  • 2007, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2006, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2000, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 1999, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 1999, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2006, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2000, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2004, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2002, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series: Winner
  • 2014, Critics' Choice Movie Awards — Best Actor in a Comedy: Nominee
  • 2012, Emmy — Outstanding Miniseries or Movie: Nominee
  • 2014, Independent Spirit Awards — Best Supporting Male: Nominee
  • 2014, Critics' Choice Movie Awards — Best Supporting Actor: Nominee
  • 2002, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series: Nominee
  • 2013, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role: Nominee
  • 2001, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series - Drama: Nominee

Relationships

  • James J. Gandolfini — Father
  • Michael Gandolfini — Son
  • Johanna Antonacci — Sister
  • Lora Somoza — Ex-fiancée
  • Marcy Wudarski — Ex-wife
  • Leta Gandolfini — Sister
  • Deborah Lin — Wife

College

  • Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick, New Jersey, United States (BA in Communications, 1983)

Details

  • Birth Name: James Joseph Gandolfini
  • Birth Place: Westwood, New Jersey, United States
  • Died: June 19, 2013
  • Profession: Actor

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