James Gandolfini

  • by Dan Bischoff
  • Narrated by John Ventimiglia
  • 6 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

James Gandolfini: The Real Life of the Man Who Made Tony Soprano is the first biography of the actor, who died in June 2013 at age 51, widely recognized as one of the best - and most defining - actors of his generation. The audiobook, as performed by Gandolfini's Sopranos co-star John Ventimiglia (Artie Bucco), is informed by fresh interviews with Sopranos actors, HBO executives, the star’s acting teachers and coaches, his childhood friends, buddies from his days as a nightclub bouncer, and Hollywood figures including the directors of his posthumously released films.
Bischoff decodes Gandolfini’s portrayal of mobsters and bad guys from his breakout role in True Romance with Patricia Arquette to the television series role that made his career, including his portrayals of real people like Leon Panetta in Zero Dark Thirty. Gandolfini’s personal life - from his marriages and family interactions to his deep friendships with his fellow cast members - enriches and enlivens this book, and deepens our understanding of the star.
James Gandolfini: The Real Life of the Man Who Made Tony Soprano is a fascinating look at Gandolfini’s complicated relationship to his roots, to the role that made him wealthy beyond his imagination, and to American notions of masculinity, power and fame. Even as he scaled the heights of his profession, creating a TV character as vivid as Carroll O’Connor’s Archie Bunker and as volcanic as Marlon Brando’s Stanley Kowalski, Gandolfini remained a reluctant celebrity dedicated more to his craft than to his career.
James Gandolfini: The Real Life of the Man Who Made Tony Soprano delivers a textured, multilayered portrait of the on- and off-screen life of a complex, talented man who rose from an Italian immigrant family in northern New Jersey to join the ranks of America’s most iconic actors.


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Most Helpful

The Moving Story of a Man Who Touched Our Lives

James Gandolfini, gave a soul to suburban New Jersey dad and mob killer, Tony Soprano. When he died suddenly of a heart attack last year, it felt like a family member had died. But Gandolfini was not Tony Soprano, he was so much deeper, kinder and more complex.

Dan Bischoff’s biography maps out the life of a man that touched all our lives. From his Italian American background, growing up in New Jersey, experiences as a working man, to becoming an actor and philanthropist.

This book gave me insight into the blossoming of an artist, and of a man ready to give back through his work and films for the charity Wounded Warrior Project (never touted in any publicity for self celebration).

John Ventimiglia, who played Artie Bucco on “The Sopranos” really put his heart into narrating this. His performance is that of an insider, fluid and heartfelt.

Written at a tight journalistic clip, this is a great listen.
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- Susie "I'm Audible's first Editor-at-Large, the host of In Bed with Susie Bright -- and a longtime author, editor, journo, and bookworm. I listen to audio when I'm cooking, playing cards, knitting, going to bed, waking up, driving, and putting other people's kids to bed! My favorite audiobooks, ever, are: "True Grit" and "The Dog of the South.""

Superb storytelling with minimal substance

Dan Bischoff does a great job painting a picture of a reserved man who kept to himself, and kept his entourage quiet. Very few people gave interviews for the work making it tough for Bischoff to find that certain story to capture Gandolfini.

John Ventimiglia does an excellent delivery of the story and stays calm and even keeled without sounding dull.

Overall both Bischoff and Ventimiglia both did the best with what they had but ultimately without insight from many close friends and family there is not a lot of substance here.
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- Robbie D "Husband, Father, Teacher."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-08-2014
  • Publisher: Audible Studios