The Sopranos creator David Chase finally revealed what happened to Tony Soprano in the infamous series finale.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter’s Awards Chatter podcast, Chase revealed that main character Tony Soprano did, indeed, die in the infamous cut-to-black Sopranos series finale, though he said that particular ending scene was not originally what he had in mind. “I had a scene in which Tony comes back from a meeting in New York in his car,” Chase said. “At the beginning of every show, he came from New York into New Jersey, and the last scene could be him coming from New Jersey back into New York for a meeting at which he was going to be killed.”
However, Chase explained that the idea for the final moments of the finale taking place in the little restaurant came to him two years before the episode aired on June 10, 2007. “But I think I had this notion — I was driving on Ocean Park Boulevard near the airport and I saw a little restaurant,” the series creator said. “It was kind of like a shack that served breakfast. And for some reason, I thought, ‘Tony should get it in a place like that.’ Why? I don’t know.”
While Chase’s intention was for Tony to die at the end of the iconic HBO series, often considered one of the best television shows of all time, he did not expect the massive response the finale received, saying, “Yeah, nobody said anything about the episode. No, it was all about the ending.” He also revealed that what bothered him about the reaction to the Sopranos finale wasn’t the huge response, but was people needing to see Tony die on screen. “That bothered me,” he said. “They wanted to know that Tony was killed. They wanted to see him go face-down in linguini, you know?”
He continued, “And I just thought, ‘God, you watched this guy for seven years and I know he’s a criminal. But don’t tell me you don’t love him in some way, don’t tell me you’re not on his side in some way. And now you want to see him killed? You want justice done? You’re a criminal after watching this shit for seven years.’ That bothered me, yeah.”
Created by Chase, The Sopranos premiered in 1999 and ran for six seasons before its series finale in 2007. Chase’s most recent project, The Many Saints of Newark, on which he served as an executive producer, follows a young Tony Soprano as he begins his descent into the New Jersey mob scene. The prequel film takes place in the 1960s and ’70s and deals heavily with the 1967 race riots that drove a wedge between the Black and Italian American communities. The film stars Michael Gandolfini, son of The Sopranos star James Gandolfini, who portrayed the adult Tony Soprano for all six seasons of the iconic HBO series.
Early in October, it was reported that Chase had signed a massive, five-year deal with WarnerMedia to create content for HBO, HBO Max and Warner Bros. Pictures Group. At the time, it hadn’t yet been confirmed whether Chase would be creating create Sopranos-related content, but it was recently confirmed that Chase and WarnerMedia were in talks to bring a prequel series to the landmark HBO show to HBO Max.
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