Some people complain about living in an era of #PeakTV, in which infinite viewing choices have potentially overwhelmed viewers. Others embrace the current landscape since it’s given us some of the best television we’ve ever seen. No matter what your stance on the subject though, you can’t deny that one of the original shows to initiate this era was The Sopranos.
The James Gandolfini-led drama basically put HBO on the map when it debuted back in 1999, showcasing what broadcast cable networks could do and where they had the potential to go. This was the show that paved the way for series like True Blood and Game of Thrones, and it’s largely regarded as one of the best TV series of all-time. That’s a title 21 Emmy wins will get you, at any rate.
So naturally people have been talking about a Sopranos movie ever since the controversial 2007 finale, in which Tony Soprano (Gandolfini) was sitting at a restaurant with his family when some potential hitmen walked in and the screen just went black.
When Gandolfini tragically died of a heart attack in 2013, it seemed like we’d never get that Sopranos movie after all. Because what is The Sopranos without the head of the mafia clan anyway?
Well apparently, it’s a prequel.
That’s the word from New Line Cinema and show creator David Chase, who have announced The Many Saints of Newark, a.k.a. the official Sopranos film, is now in development. Chase wrote the screenplay alongside another former show writer, Lawrence Konner, and according to Variety it’s supposed to feature some fan-favourite characters from the series.
Mum’s the word on which characters may pop up, of course, and as of right now no casting has been announced. Probably because trying to outcast the original cast will be… well, hard is an understatement. There’s also going to be an incredible amount of pressure on the writers to get this right for all the millions of fans out there who will inevitably want to see this. Not to mention a lot of hate if things don’t go well.
For now, we do know that Saints is supposed to take place during the Newark riots in the 1960s, where rivalries between African-Americans and Italians became deadly after gangsters took matters into their own hands. So really, this doesn’t have much to do with The Sopranos at all, except perhaps laying down the groundwork of how Tony came to wield such power. Personally, I’m hoping for a Junior Soprano appearance, although any actor will have a hard time topping Dominic Chianese‘s performance.
Okay to be fair all of the actors who are cast in this are going to have some big shoes to fill. But hey — at least we’re getting some sort of continuation of this tale. Let’s just hope the ending to this one doesn’t involve any blank screens or epic Journey ditties.