Frank Vincent, ‘Sopranos’ and ‘Goodfellas’ Actor, Dies at 78

Frank Vincent, an Italian character actor who uttered the famous line “Now go home and get your fuc*^% shine box” to Joe Pesci’s character Tommy D. in Goodfellas, died today during open heart surgery, TMZ reports. He was 78.Vincent was a beloved actor who made a name for himself playing notoriously tough characters, like Billy Batts in “Goodfellas” and Frank Marino in “Casino.

He began acting in 1976 when he co-starred in the low-budget crime film “The Death Collector” alongside Joe Pesci. Vincent then acted in Martin Scorsese’s “Raging Bull,” which sparked the first of many collaborations between Vincent, Pesci, and Robert De Niro

Frank Vincent, an Italian character actor who uttered the famous line “Now go home and get your fuc*^% shine box” to Joe Pesci’s character Tommy D. in Goodfellas, died today during open heart surgery, TMZ reports. He was 78.

He began acting in 1976 when he co-starred in the low-budget crime film “The Death Collector” alongside Joe Pesci. Vincent then acted in Martin Scorsese’s “Raging Bull,” which sparked the first of many collaborations between Vincent, Pesci, and Robert De Niro

On HBO’s The Sopranos, Leotardo often butted heads with James Gandolfini’s Tony Soprano as he eventually rose to become boss of the Lupertazzi crime family.

“He didn’t fool around. Phil was serious,” Vincent said in a 2011 interview. “He had a job to do and he thought, you know, ‘This Soprano guy is from Jersey, what does that mean? We are New Yorkers! The Jersey mob is nothing — they don’t even prick their fingers when they do the ceremony.’ Some of the writing for Phil was just brilliant.”

His film résumé also included The Pope of Greenwich Village (1984), Brian De Palma’s Wise Guys(1986), Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing (1989) and Jungle Fever (1991), Sidney Lumet’s Night Falls on Manhattan (1996), James Mangold’s Cop Land (1997), Shark Tale (2004) and Chicago Overcoat (2009).

Vincent also appeared in Hype Williams’ Belly (1998) and served as the official acting coach to rappers DMX, Nas and Method Man on the film.

A native of North Adams, Mass., Vincent was raised in Jersey City, N.J. and became a drummer, performing with the likes of Paul Anka, Del Shannon, Steve Lawrence & Eydie Gorme and Trini Lopez and the Belmonts.

Scorsese saw Vincent playing a gambler who gets killed by the mob in The Death Collector (1976) — the film starred Joe Pesci, who helped get him the role — then cast him alongside Pesci and Robert De Niro as Salvi in the iconic boxing movie Raging Bull. In that film, his character is beaten to a pulp in the Copacabana by Pesci’s Joey.

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The Cast of ‘The Sopranos’ Then and Now

Back in 1999, the world was introduced to arguably the best TV show ever created. Set primarily in New Jersey, ‘The Sopranos’ explored the story of mobster Tony Soprano, a man attempting to keep his home life, as well as his mental state, intact in a profession where a bullet could come flying around any corner.

The series was a win in all forms, with the acting, writing, dialogue and overall believability holding us captivated with each episode that aired (yes, even the finale). With that in mind, let’s take a look at where the cast of ‘The Sopranos’ is today.

Tony Soprano — James Gandolfini

Tony Soprano

HBO / Paul A. Hebert, Getty Images

Then: Back when ‘The Sopranos’ was killing it in the ratings, James Gandolfini became not only a star, but also known for his brute onscreen personality. Much to everyone’s surprise, Gandolfini’s true persona was that of a pacifist. Before ‘The Sopranos’ took to HBO, Gandolfini had played memorable tough guys in films such as ‘Get Shorty’ and ‘True Romance.’

Now: Gandolfini died suddenly of a heart attack in 2013 at the age of 51 while vacationing in Rome. His death rocked Hollywood and led to scores of tributes. Before he passed away, he had appeared in acclaimed films like ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ and ‘Enough Said.’ His last credit is for a film called ‘The Drop,’ slated to open later in 2014.

Carmela Soprano — Edie Falco

Carmela Soprano

HBO / Jason Kempin, Getty Images

Then: The role of Tony’s wife, Carmela Soprano, wasn’t the first time Edie Falco worked with HBO — she was already known for her role as Diane Whittlesey on the network’s prison drama ‘Oz.’ A struggling actress at the age of 30, she was given small breaks with roles in ‘Law & Order,’ ‘Homicide: Life on the Street’ and ‘Laws of Gravity,’ and a big break with Woody Allen’s ‘Bullets Over Broadway.’ Yet among them all, her Emmy-winning portrayal of Carmela would be one that would change her life.

Now: Since her ‘Sopranos’ days, Falco’s career has been a continued success, earning another Emmy Award for her title role on the Showtime series ‘Nurse Jackie.’ Falco has also found herself appearing in numerous Broadway plays that have won high praise from critics and audiences alike.

Dr. Jennifer Melfi — Lorraine Bracco

Jennifer Melfi

HBO / Larry Busacca, Getty Images

Then: Certainly no stranger to the mob motif (Bracco co-starred in the Martin Scorsese classic ‘Goodfellas’), the actress known Dr. Melfi was originally offered the role of Carmela Soprano. Thinking it was too close to her ‘Goodfellas’ role, Bracco instead asked to play Dr. Jennifer Melfi, Tony Soprano’s psychiatrist. The choice turned out to be the right one.

Now: Today, Bracco went on to play Angela Rizzoli on TNT’s ‘Rizzoli & Isles.’ Outside of acting, she owns Bracco Wines, a line of wines that was featured on the season one finale of ‘Top Chef.’

Christopher Moltisanti — Michael Imperioli

Chris Moltisanti

Michael / Jemal Countess, Getty Images

Then: Another ‘Goodfellas’ cast member, Michael Imperioli played Christopher Moltisanti,Tony’s nephew who constant struggled with drugs and alcohol. His character dreamed of being a Hollywood screenwriter, which is the exact path Imperioli took, directing and writing a few ‘Sopranos’ episodes himself.

Now: Since his ‘Sopranos’ fame, Imperioli’s credits have continued, starring in the now defunct ‘Life on Mars’ and ‘Detroit 1-8-7′ and appearing in various films. He’s also appeared on the Showtime series ‘Californication.’ However, perhaps his most notable performance since ‘The Sopranos’ is the popular 1800 Tequila commercials in which he ruggedly mocks a bottle of Petron while “his” tequila pours him a shot. Yes, it’s very intimidating.

Paulie ‘Walnuts’ Gualtieri — Tony Sirico

Paulie Walnuts

HBO / Roger Kisby, Getty Images

Then: Before his acting career took off, Sirico, aka Paulie Walnuts, was an actual mobster, having served two different stints in the big house in the late ’60s and early ’70s. Since then, it was goodbye crime and hello Hollywood. Oddly enough, despite his lengthy list of credits, Sirico is mainly know for playing… you guessed it, mobsters! Word has it that he agreed to play Paulie on one condition, that his character would not be a ‘rat.’

Now: Sirico seems to have slowed down since ‘The Sopranos’ ended, making appearances on shows such as ‘Chuck’ and ‘Medium.’ Lately he’s transitioned from mobsters to cops, donning badges in films like ‘Zarra’s Law’ and the awesomely named ‘Jersey Shore Shark Attack.’ He’s also logged a guest role on the acclaimed Netflix series ‘Lilyhammer’ and done some voicework on ‘Family Guy.’

Silvio Dante — Steven Van Zandt

Silvio Dante

HBO / Jason Kempkin, Getty Images

Then: Before ‘The Sopranos’ began Van Zandt was a struggling musician in some musical combo called The E Street Band headed by a guy from Jersey named Bruce Springsteen. Already having the world in the palm of his hands, Little Steven’s career hit a new high when he took on the role of Silvio Dante.

Now: Age means nothing to this guy, who consistently tours with Springsteen and the E Street Band. Aside from his first love, Van Zandt starred in ‘Lilyhammer’ and served as an executive producer on the 2013 film ‘Not Fade Away,’ which was written and directed by ‘Sopranos’ creator David Chase.

Meadow Soprano — Jamie-Lynn Sigler

Meadow Soprano

HBO / David Livingston, Getty Images

Then: Beginning her acting and singing career at the age of seven, Jamie-Lynn Sigler was cast as Meadow Soprano at just 18. In the earlier seasons, Meadow was intelligent yet somewhat troubled. However, as the show rolled on she grew into a young woman who learned the consequences of life — often firsthand, given her father’s “business.”

Now: Life post-‘Sopranos’ has been rather bright for Sigler, who guest starred on 13 episodes of HBO’s ‘Entourage’ and five episodes of ‘Ugly Betty.’ She also starred on the short-lived TV series ‘Guys with Kids.’ In August 2013, she and husband Cutter Dykstra welcomed a baby boy.

A.J. Soprano — Robert Iler

A.J. Soprano

HBO / Jamie McCarthy, Getty Images

Then: Iler played Anthony Soprano, Jr., or A.J., the youngest Soprano child. His character could be seen as that of a slacker, often lazy and finding various hardships during his adolescence. Iler didn’t do much television acting before ‘The Sopranos,’ mainly appearing in commercials. However, once HBO cast him it was smooth sailing…sort of.

Now: With just one television credit post-Sopranos (he appeared on ‘Law & Order’ in 2009), Iler doesn’t seem to be doing much acting today. But he did show up on the ‘2010 World Series of Poker.’ Acting aside, Iler’s had multiple run-ins with the law for cases ranging from marijuana possession to larceny.

Bobby ‘Bacala’ Baccalieri — Steve Schirripa

Bobby Bacala

HBO / Roger Kisby, Getty Images

Then: Back in the early ’90s, Schirripa was working in Las Vegas when he got a part as an extra in the Martin  Scorsese film, ‘Casino.’ It seems quick, but it was just five years after his ‘Casino’ role that he was cast in ‘The Sopranos’ as Bobby Baccalieri.

Now: Today, Schirripa is doing just fine, with minor appearances on shows such as ‘Ugly Betty’ and ‘Brothers’ to more prominent television roles like ‘The Secret Life of the American Teenager.’ He also serves as the host and narrator of ‘Nothing Personal,’ a true-crime series on Investigation Discovery.

Ralph Cifaretto — Joe Pantoliano

Ralph Cifaretto

HBO / Stephen Lovekin, Getty Images

Then: Having already racked up an impressive acting resume before joining ‘The Sopranos’ — appearing everywhere from ‘The Goonies’ to ‘The Matrix’ — Pantoliano’s character Ralph Cifaretto pushed him to new heights. Playing a largely unlikable mobster, his character held an immense presence from the day he stepped foot on set to the very moment of his death — which was certainly a gruesome one.

Now: Even today, ‘Joey Pants’ pops up everywhere, having appeared in everything from ‘How to Make it In America’ to ‘The Simpsons.’ Aside from Hollywood, he is an author, having penned two memoirs titled ‘Who’s Sorry Now’ and the more recent, ‘Asylum,’ in which he discusses his diagnosis with clinical depression.

Corrado ‘Junior’ Soprano — Dominic Chianese

Junior Soprano

HBO / Mike Coppola, Getty Images

Then: Starting his career in Off-Broadway plays and cabarets way back in 1952, Chianese got his first televised role in 1974’s ‘East Side/West Side.’ He would then go on to appear in ‘The Godfather: Part II,’ which sparked a friendship with fellow actor Al Pacino. However, among his lengthy list of accomplishments, his portrayal of Junior Soprano garnered him arguably the most attention.

Now: Life post-‘Sopranos’ is rather busy for Chianese,  even in his 80s. A celebrated musician, he’s also been featured on HBO’s ‘Boardwalk Empire’ (created by ‘Sopranos’ writer Terrance Winter), ‘Damages,’ ‘The Good Wife’ and ‘The Secret Life of the American Teenager.’


‘Escape From New York’ Facts


Kurt Russell and writer/director John Carpenter’s Snake Plissken was as intriguing as he was terrifying. A man who had no time for anything except completing the mission laid at his feet, Snake took down whatever authority figure or gang member who dared to stand in his way. He first took down Gotham in 1981’s Escape from New York, gliding into a version of Manhattan that had been isolated from the mainland and turned into a prison colony. His mission? Save the President of the United States (whose escape pod had landed in the city after terrorists had taken Air Force One). Plissken was called upon again in 1996 to rescue a different President’s rebellious daughter from a similarly isolated Los Angeles. Though the plot echoed the original in a few spots, the box office and critical acclaim did not despite another rock solid performance by Russell.

There has been talk about an Escape from New York reboot for years now, and while that may or may not happen, Kurt Russell’s take on the character will be nearly impossible to top, specifically in the minds of fans who have accepted Snake as iconic. In the spirit of the film’s 35th anniversary, here are some facts you may not know about the creation of Snake Plissken and the effort to bring him to life on the big screen for his escape from the big apple.

Kurt Russell scared people while in “Snake mode”


It’s obvious before he even opens his mouth that Snake is an intimating character. The eyepatch, the clothes, the look on his face that says “I could kill you without giving it a second thought,” it all adds up to one incredibly mean-looking dude. Russell spoke out on how he found out just how bad his character really was during a Q&A at EW’s Capetown Film Festival in 2013, relaying a story about a stroll he took through the streets of St. Louis while on location.

“One night I had to go down about three blocks, and we didn’t have anybody to go down there with me, so I just geared up with all my guns and everything – Snake’s coming in to wreak some havoc – and I came around the corner and there are these four guys there. We’re around the corner now, and none of my guys can see me. I just looked at these guys and they looked at me. And this is how different this was at that time: when you saw that guy, with a serious machine gun and a knife and a bunch of stuff you didn’t know what it was, even. I just flashed the light a little bit on the gun, and these guys looked at me, and they were pretty rough characters, and they just went, ‘Hey man, easy, easy.’ And they turned and walked away. I couldn’t wait to get back and tell John, ‘I think this guy’s going to work!’

Snake Plissken was a real guy


Well, sorta. There wasn’t actually a gun-toting dude who had to break out of a super prison on Manhattan island, but John Carpenter did know a Snake. When writing the script, Carpenter was having a tough time coming up with a name that would capture his character’s true nastiness, but he happened to have a friend of a friend who knew somebody named Snake Plissken. Carpenter said it wasn’t just the name that he used for inspiration, but the real Snake’s ink, as well.

“When I was writing he script I had to come up with a name for my main character and I had a friend who knew a guy in Cleveland named Snake Plissken. He had a snake tattooed on him and he could make that snake move. He was kind of a high school tough guy and had some ridiculous qualities to him, and it just seemed like, that’s my hero. That’s my kinda guy.”

We have Kurt Russell to thank for the eyepatch


Snake without an eyepatch would be like a unicorn without its horn, a hot dog without a bun, a Trump rally without a protest — some things just go together. Snake’s trademark eyepatch wasn’t actually part of John Carpenter’s original vision for Snake. That incredible addition was all Kurt Russell, who came up with the idea after being inspired by John Wayne’s eyepatch wearing tough guy, Rooster Cogburn in True Grit.

“I said to John, ‘I think it’d be cool to wear an eyepatch.’ I think a lot of guys would have gone, ‘Well, I don’t know…’ but John immediately went, ‘That’s great! I don’t think anybody’s worn an eyepatch since John Wayne in True Grit!’”

Not many actors have worn an eyepatch since Escape from New York, either, and there’s certainly nobody out there who’s rocked it better than Snake. Sorry, Sam Jackson.

Russell took a beating during his gladiator fight scene


Russell was already an acting vet by the time he began shooting Escape from New York, so throwing a fake punch was no big deal. His opponent, pro-wrestler Ox Baker, didn’t have as much practice, though, and laid into Russell a little too much during the fight scene. Carpenter recalled having to tell Baker to lay off because he was hitting with way too much force, saying, “If you look at the film, you’ll see a couple of shots in there where Kurt is fighting for his life.”

Russell eventually got the message across to Baker in a not so subtle, but effective way. According to Carpenter, Russell walked over to the wrestler during a break and gave him a light tap in the groin, telling him “you gotta ease up.” From then on, they didn’t have any issues.

Russell wasn’t the only actor considered for the role


While it might be impossible to think of the Escape movies without Russell, he wasn’t the only actor up for the role. Carpenter felt that Russell was “the only man for the job,” but the studio wasn’t sure and wanted to look at other actors. Tommy Lee Jones, Chuck Norris, and Charles Bronson were all candidates for the part early on in the casting process. What eventually won the studio over was Carpenter’s relationship with Russell from their work together on the Elvis biopic.

During the Capetown festival, Russell commented on how Carpenter fought for his role in the movie and the desire he had to take it on.

“So I read it, and I said, ‘This is exactly what I want to do. It’s something that I know I can do that I know nobody is going to think of me for except for you, John.’ They wanted Charlie Bronson to do it, and John fought for me. A couple of times in my life, I’ve gotten to read something – Tombstone was like that – and I just said, ‘I’d love to do this.’”

Remember, we instantly think of Escape from New York, The Thing, Big Trouble in Little China, and Tango and Cash when we think of Russell, but in 1980, he was a guy who had done a lot of TV work (including the high-profile Elvis bio-pic), some Disney films, and starred in Used Cars. Seeing him as Snake was a career-altering revelation for Hollywood.

Snake’s bank robbery scene was cut

Snake certainly seems like the type of guy who would take up bank robbing, and Carpenter and Russell shot a scene for the film’s opening that had him doing just that. Audiences during test screenings found the scene confusing, though, and it was eventually left on the editing room floor. On the film’s DVD commentary, Carpenter would admit that the scene would have bogged down the film and given a little too much of Snake’s mysterious backstory to the audience.

Snake almost escaped from Earth


Due to the curse of time, we’re almost certainly never going to see Russell play Snake ever again (though, one never knows with the trend of other notable actors returning to play older versions of popular characters), but there was once a time years ago when a third Escape film wasn’t such an unrealistic possibility. While talking at the Capetown Film Festival, Russell entertained the ridiculous idea they once had for Snake’s next escape, saying, “The only other one we wanted to do, both John and I thought Escape from Earth for Snake.”

With Lockout, filmmaker Luc Besson trotted out his own escape from a prison in space film in 2012, much to the displeasure of Carpenter (who sued), but there’s only one Snake, so surely we can all unite in an effort to send Kurt Russell into space, can’t we?

If You Own Any Of The 25 Most Valuable VHS Tapes, You Could Make Thousands


If you decided to hold on to your old VHS tapes instead of throwing them all away, it could yet prove to be a wise decision.

In fact some VHS tapes are highly sought after these days, according to

If you’ve got a VHS copy of any of the following, you should probably get in touch with them:

Frankenstein’s Castle of Freaks (JVI) £1,500



The Beast in Heat (JVI) £1,200




The Legend of Hillbilly John (Rainbow) £1,000



Journey Into Beyond (Citycenta GO) £1,000



Lemora, Lady Dracula (IFS) £900



Don’t Open the Window (Films of the 80s) £900



Flesh Eaters (Knockout) £800


Black Decameron £800



Curse Of Death (£700)



Farewell Africa £600




Others which will make you a nice bit of change:

Betrayed (Taboo) – £1100
Celestine (GO) – £1100
Sisters Of Blood (Alpha) – £700
House Of Perversity (GO) – £600
Anthropophagus The Beats (Videoshack) – £500
Hitchhike To Hell (VRO) – £500
Devil Hunter (CineHollywood) – £500
Nightmare Maker [Orange Sleeve Version] (Atlantis) – £400
Madhouse [Alt. Sleeve] (Medusa) – £250
The Evil Dead [Not Guilty sleeve version] (Palace) – £200
The Love Butcher (Intervision) – £200
Eegah (Trytel) – £500
Cannibal Man (Intervision) – £500
Gallery Of Horror (Trytel) -£500
Tomb Of The Undead (Trytel) – £500

Well those all seem pretty obscure to say the least but someone out there’s got a copy, that’s for sure.



Image via IMDB

It’s one of the UK’s most iconic films and now the plot details for a Trainspotting squeal have been released.

Speaking to Vice, author Irvine Welsh revealed: “It’s very much telling a story about Edinburgh as it currently is. The main element to the story is basically Renton, Begbie, Sick Boy and Spud getting back together again, and it tells the story of them getting involved in the vice industry in a very innovative way.”

Production for the movie has already begun and filming is set to commence in May.

In an interview with Collider, Ewan McGregor certainly stirred excitement for fans of the original movie:

“None of us want to make a poor sequel to it. So had we not been presented with the most extraordinary script, which we were, I think we wouldn’t be making the sequel. But because we were, we are,” he explained.

“The script only arrived very recently, [and it] was really, really, really good”.

If you haven’t seen the first movie yet here’s the trailer – you won’t be disappointed.



It’s hard to believe that it’s been more than 15 years since Christian Bale terrified people everywhere with his haunting performance as Patrick Bateman in American Psycho.

And while the film has since become a cult favourite, even a decade and a half later, there are still a lot intricacies still being revealed about this brilliantly crafted horror film.



The film ran into several issues when it came time to dress Bateman.

Many fashion designers didn’t want to be associated with the killer’s wardrobe. Cerruti allowed Bateman to wear their clothes — but not when he was killing people. Rolex allowed any and all characters except Bateman to wear their watches, while Comme de Garçons refused to authorize the use of one of their bags to carry a corpse (understandably).


Christian Bale stayed in character for lunch meetings with American Psycho writerBret Easton Ellis, who became so uncomfortable he had to ask the performer — who is known for his method acting — to stop.

The novelist said, “That was in 1998, I think, when that happened. I didn’t have an issue with Christian Bale doing that at the time, it was just seriously unnerving… I was unnerved that I was in a restaurant with someone pretending to be this monster I created. I just wanted him to stop.”


Bale’s dedication to his craft didn’t end there.

During production, he spoke with an American accent at all times — and it was so convincing, that when he spoke with his native British accent at the wrap party, many people on the film’s crew thought that was a fake accent he was perfecting for an upcoming role.


Christian Bale based his performance for Patrick Bateman off of Tom Cruise.

When speaking about the Academy Award winner’s inspiration for the heartless Wall Street killer, the movie’s director, Mary Harron, told BlackBook, “We talked about how Martian-like Patrick Bateman was, how he was looking at the world like somebody from another planet, watching what people did and trying to work out the right way to behave. And then one day, [Bale] called me and he had been watching Tom Cruise on [The Late Show With] David Letterman, and he just had this very intense friendliness with nothing behind the eyes, and he was really taken with this energy.”


During production, Willem Defoe (who played Detective Donald Kimball) was asked to film each scene three different ways: 1. As if Kimball knew Bateman killed Paul Allen (Jared Leto), 2. As if Kimball didn’t know Bateman killed Allen and 3. As if Kimball wasn’t sure if Bateman killed Allen.

The director then edited the takes together, leaving what Kimball thought of Bateman ambiguous to the audience.


Despite being prominently featured in the film, Huey Lewis and the News’ “Hip to Be Square” wasn’t included on the film’s soundtrack.

While it was long speculated (and reported) that the musician opposed the film’s violent themes, he actually opted not to be featured on the flick’s soundtrack because he didn’t want to make his fans purchase an entire album just to own the one song.


The distinctive “Whoosh” sound heard during the film’s infamous business card scene is the slowed-down sound of a sword being drawn from its sheath.


To get into character, Christian Bale actually followed the extensive morning routine that Patrick Bateman does religiously.


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