#aTypicalInterview: Playing Vito Spatofore on The Sopranos was my most challenging acting role - Joseph R. Gannascoli
In this week’s A-typical interview, we feature American actor Joseph R Gannascoli.
The 61-year-old is best known for his portrayal of Vito Spatafore in the award-winning HBO series, The Sopranos.
Gannascoli received his big break in acting from Benicio del Toro, whom he met on the set of Money For Nothing.
After appearing in Ed Wood, Del Toro later cast Gannascoli in his directorial debut, Submission.
Gannascoli has appeared in films including Mickey Blue Eyes and television shows including Law and Order before appearing in The Sopranos, in which he starred alongside the late James Gandolfini.
Gannascoli also appeared in other films, including Men In Black III, An Act of War and with Vincent Pastore on Gordon Ramsey’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back.
Prior to acting, Gannascoli was a professional chef.
What do you consider the most challenging acting role in your career so far?
Vito Spatofore, of course.
Your three favourite TV series of all time are ... ?
The Wire, Mad Men and Breaking Bad.
How would you sum up your experience of working with James Gandolfini?
The most gifted, humble, regular guy ever.
The best mafia movie you have ever watched is ... ?
The usual, Godfather and Goodfellas.
What is the biggest misconception people have of Joseph R Gannascoli?
That I’m not approachable.
A pizza joint is paying homage to you with the Joseph Gannascoli pizza. You get to choose the main ingredients. What are the main toppings?
Sausage, sautéed onions and hot peppers, for sure.
Do you still have fans calling you Vito Spatafore when they come across you on the street?
Yes, all the time, in fact. I tell them, my friends call me Joe.
You spent a lengthy amount of time on set with The Sopranos. Which fellow co-star did you develop the best friendship with?
Gigi, and John Fiore, he is a tremendous actor and a funny bastard.
Prior to featuring in The Sopranos, you were a professional chef. What would you say is your signature dish?
Linguini with clam sauce.
Sopranos fans still debate about how the show ended. Director David Chase chose an ambiguous ending to the show. In your opinion, what happens to Tony Soprano at the diner that night?
He lived, and life went on as we know it.