Hundreds of family, friends and fans gathered to mourn James Gandolfini on Thursday. The actor known for his starring role in "The Sorpranos" had his funeral at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York. Gandolfini died of a heart attack while on vacation in Italy on June 19.
James Galdofini, born in September 1961 in Westwood, N.J, was best known for his starring role as Tony Soprano, on the HBO series "The Sopranos." The hit series was recently named the best written television show of all time by the Writers Guild of America. For his work on "The Sopranos," Gandolfini earned a Golden Globe award, three Primetime Emmy Awards as well as three Screen Actors Guild Awards.
Gandolfini started his acting career in 1987 and had his first break in "True Romance," playing the character Virgil. Through his career Gandolfini worked with the Coen brothers, Tony Scott, Clint Eastwood and Steve Zaillian and starred alongside Nicolas Cage, Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, Denzel Washington and Gene Hackman, among others. Gandolfini also had several producer credits to his name and starred in the documentary "Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraq."
Gandolfini was also an accomplished stage actor. He starred in the 1992 Broadway adaptation of "A Streetcar Name Desire" and 1995's "On the Waterfront." Gandolfini last appeared on Broadway in 2009, starring in "God of Carnage" with Jeff Daniels, Hope Davis and Marcia Gay Harden.
The many guests at Gandolfini's funeral included New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, New York Jets owner Woody Johnson, Alec Baldwin, "Sopranos" creator David Chase, and, among actors from the show, Steve Buscemi, Lorraine Bracco, Edie Falco, Dominic Chianese, Jaime-Lyn Sigler, Aida Turturro, Joe Pantoliano and Steve Schirripa. Hundreds of fans were also allowed to attend the ceremony, which lasted for approximately 90 minutes.
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Many fans in attendance said they fell in love with Gandolfini for his role in "The Sopranos" but what drew them to the actor was his humble nature. A boyhood friend commented that, despite the fame and accolades, the actor was grounded and treated those around him with the utmost respect.