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Paul Sorvino, Goodfella’s Star, Tough-Guy Icon, Passes Away At 83

Paul Sorvino, who built a 50 year career off of playing complex and mild-mannered tough guys has passed away at 83

Paul Sorvino, a legendary Hollywood character actor who often played tough guys and criminals, has passed away at age 83.


Sorvino was born in Brooklyn, New York, and trained as an opera singer and sculptor in addition to film and stage acting. Paul is the father of Academy Award-winning actress Mira Sorvino.

Paul Sorvino’s Best Work

Sorvino’s best-known role was as crime boss Paul Cicero in Goodfellas, but he played many great roles throughout his 50-year career.


Before Goodfellas, Sorvino starred in The Panic in Needle Park, The Gambler, Reds, and Cruising.
Following the success of Goodfellas, Sorvino starred in Law & Order for 31 episodes as Detective Phil Cerreta. Other television roles included a lead in the CBS series That’s Life and as Luciano crime boss Frank Costello in Godfather of Harlem opposite Forest Whittaker.

I first met Sorvino in the extremely underrated Rocketeer, where he played gangster Eddie Valentine. He uttered one of my favorite lines in movies:

He was also excellent in Romeo + Juliet, The Cooler, and Nixon, where he played Henry Kissinger.

World Reacts To Paul Sorvino’s Death

His most enduring legacy may be how he taught everyone to slide garlic.

Sorvino made some not-so-veiled threats against Harvey Weinstein after learning the producer sexually assaulted and blackmailed his daughter.

A man of many talents.

We’re losing a generation of terrific “criminal” actors.

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