The Sopranos' now-infamous cut-to-black ending has made the 2007 finale one of the most debated TV episodes of all time. Now, eight years after it aired, creator David Chase has given the Directors Guild of America a shot-by-shot analysis of the controversial scene.
From the decision to play "Don't Stop Believin" to who the mystery man at the restaurant is, Chase offers insight any Sopranos fan would love. But we all know what you really care about: Did Chase finally say whether or not Tony (James Gandolfini) died? Here's Chase's answer:
"I thought the possibility would go through a lot of people's minds or maybe everybody's mind that he was killed. He might have gotten shot three years ago in that situation. But he didn't. Whether this is the end here, or not, it's going to come at some point for the rest of us. Hopefully we're not going to get shot by some rival gang mob or anything like that. I'm not saying that [happened]. But obviously he stood more of a chance of getting shot by a rival gang mob than you or I do because he put himself in that situation. All I know is the end is coming for all of us."
So... yeah. We still have no idea whether or not Tony survived the finale. And according to Chase, he can't believe we're still asking. "I thought the ending would be somewhat jarring, sure. But not to the extent it was, and not a subject of such discussion," Chase wrote. "I really had no idea about that. I never considered the black a shot. I just thought what we see is black. The ceiling I was going for at that point, the biggest feeling I was going for, honestly, was don't stop believing. It was very simple and much more on the nose than people think. That's what I wanted people to believe. That life ends and death comes, but don't stop believing. There are attachments we make in life, even though it's all going to come to an end, that are worth so much, and we're so lucky to have been able to experience them. Life is short. Either it ends here for Tony or some other time. But in spite of that, it's really worth it. So don't stop believing."