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David Chase on James Gandolfini: 'Genius'

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GANDOLFINI CHASE
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The Sopranos creator David Chase released the following statement on the passing of James Gandolfini, who helped turn Chase’s iconic HBO character Tony Soprano into a household name:

“He was a genius,” Chase said. “Anyone who saw him even in the smallest of his performances knows that. He is one of the greatest actors of this or any time. A great deal of that genius resided in those sad eyes. I remember telling him many times, ‘You don’t get it. You’re like Mozart.” There would be silence at the other end of the phone. For [his wife Deborah Lin] and [children] Michael and Liliana this is crushing. And it’s bad for the rest of the world. He wasn’t easy sometimes. But he was my partner, he was my brother in ways I can’t explain and never will be able to explain.”

Gandolfini passed away after suffering a heart attack at the age of 51.