James Gandolfini Death: 'Sopranos' Actor Had At Least 8 Alcoholic Drinks At Final Dinner, Source Says

 @TBarrabit.barrabi@ibtimes.com
on June 21 2013 9:26 AM
Gandolfini
James Gandolfini, who brilliantly played conflicted North Jersey mob boss Tony Soprano, became a reluctant superstar. Reuters/Mark Blinch

A new report may shed light on the circumstances surrounding the death of James Gandolfini. A hotel source in Rome claims that the “Sopranos” actor had at least eight alcoholic drinks at the final meal before he died.

According to the source, Gandolfini ordered eight alcoholic drinks -- including four shorts of rum, two pina coladas, and two beers -- at his final meal with son Michael, the New York Post reported. The actor, best known for playing Tony Soprano in the HBO series “The Sopranos,” is also alleged to have ordered two orders of fried king prawns and a “large portion” of foie gras at the dinner.

Gandolfini purportedly struggled with alcohol addiction in his final weeks, and he also had well-documented issues with drug use, the Post reports. In the weeks before his death, the “Sopranos” actor had attended Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, but a source familiar with the situation claims that fellow attendees “didn’t think that he was serious about getting sober.”

“I can confirm he has been known to blow lines and drink like an Irish sailor on weekend leave,” another source told the Post. The paper also notes that photos of Gandolfini’s trip to Rome showed the 51-year-old looking “haggard” in the days before his death, and he had been spotted with a drink in his hand.

Mere hours before his death from an apparent massive heart attack, Gandolfini and his 13-year-old son, Michael, arrived at Boscolo Exedra Roma hotel’s outdoor restaurant for dinner, the Post reports. According to the hotel source, Gandolfini first ordered a pina colada with two shots of rum on the side. He then ordered a second round of that order, followed by an additional two beers.

In addition to the eight alcoholic drinks, Gandolfini ordered two separate orders of fried prawns covered in a mayonnaise chili sauce and a large portion of foie gras -- which he finished by himself, the Post reported. “Everything [Gandolfini] ordered was fried. Obviously, that’s going to cause problems with your heart,” the source added.

At around 10 p.m. that night, Michael Gandolfini discovered his father in cardiac arrest in their hotel room, the Post reports. Paramedics rushed the actor to a local hospital, but were unable to revive him.

While the 51-year-old is believed to have died from a massive heart attack, it is unclear if the alcoholic drinks played a role in his death. Officials plan to perform an autopsy to determine an exact cause of death.

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