June 27, 2013
James Gandolfini: 'Sopranos' Creator David Chase Will Speak At Funeral

Sopranos creator David Chase is expected to speak at James Gandolfini's funeral.

Chase was among many friends, family members, and co-workers who attended the ceremony today (June 27). According to The Wrap, the funeral for the late actor began at 10 am.

The website reports that several of James Gandolfini's Sopranos castmates showed up to pay their respects to the actor. Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Michael Imperioli, Aida Turturro, and Vincent Curatola were all in attendance at the ceremony in New York City.

David Chase recently sat down with the folks at The Guardian to discuss the aftermath of James Gandolfini's death. The Sopranos creator said the outpouring of grief from all walks of life was a testament to who "he was and is."

Chase explained:

There is something immensely lovable about him and something immensely interesting. I don't know which came first. There was a quality, I think – maybe it's my taste showing – but there was a quality of sadness he had. I've been thinking about it recently, and my feeling is that you saw in him a little boy. The lost, hurt, little boy. He stood for all lost little boys.

The Sopranos creator said he saw James Gandolfini about a month before passed away. Chase also revealed he often thought of the actor as his own brother.

"When I say brother, I mean brother: we didn't always get along. We didn't always agree. He understood me on some level, I would say that. I can't say whether he would say it was the same for him," Chase explained to the publication.

James Gandolfini died from a heart attack last week. He was only 51 years old. Fans will get to see the acclaimed actor one last time in crime drama Animal Rescue. The film co-stars Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace. A release date has not been set as of this writing.

"We were all very deeply saddened and feel very honored to have worked with him. This was the last film he shot," a 20th Century Fox executive said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.

What is your favorite James Gandolfini performance?