By Derek Lawrence
June 29, 2021 at 12:02 PM EDT
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"When I was a kid, guys like me were brought up to follow codes."

Those words from Tony Soprano (the late great James Gandolfini), said over the face of his younger self (Gandolfini's son Michael), kickstart the explosive first trailer for The Many Saints of Newark, a prequel film to The Sopranos.

Written and produced by Sopranos creator David Chase and directed by series alum Alan Taylor, Many Saints is set amid the Newark, New Jersey riots of the 1960s, which broke out as a result of tensions flaring between the city's Black and Italian residents. Michael Gandolfini (The Deuce) steps into his father's shoes as a young Tony Soprano who's being groomed by his uncle, Dickie Moltisanti (Alessandro Nivola), the father of Christopher (Michael Imperioli) and cousin of Carmela (Edie Falco). The stacked cast also includes Leslie Odom Jr., Jon Bernthal, Billy Magnussen, Corey Stoll, Ray Liotta, and Vera Farmiga as Tony's mother, Livia Soprano.

THE MANY SAINTS OF NEWARK
Credit: Barry Wetcher/Warner Bros.

Here's the full synopsis: "Young Anthony Soprano is growing up in one of the most tumultuous eras in Newark's history, becoming a man just as rival gangsters begin to rise up and challenge the all-powerful DiMeo crime family's hold over the increasingly race-torn city. Caught up in the changing times is the uncle he idolizes, Dickie Moltisanti, who struggles to manage both his professional and personal responsibilities — and whose influence over his impressionable nephew will help make the teenager into the all-powerful mob boss we'll later come to know: Tony Soprano."

THE MANY SAINTS OF NEWARK
Credit: Barry Wetcher/Warner Bros.
THE MANY SAINTS OF NEWARK
Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

Speaking to EW in July 2019 shortly after wrapping filming, Nivola raved about the opportunity to lead the continuation of one of TV's most iconic series.

"David Chase wrote me the role of a lifetime," declared the Tony-nominated actor. "Far and away, filming this movie was the most exciting thing in my career so far. It's an incredibly nuanced, violent, funny, charming, scary, morally confused person, and it was an absolute joy to play."

THE MANY SAINTS OF NEWARK
Credit: Barry Wetcher/Warner Bros.

The Many Saints of Newark premieres Oct. 1 in theaters and on HBO Max.

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