American actor Paul Sorvino, best known for his role as gangster Pauly Cicero in the classic mob movie Good Guys, has died aged 83.
Sorvino, also known for his role as Police Sergeant Phil Ceretta on the TV series Law & Order, has worked in film and television for more than 50 years.
The actor’s daughter Mira Sorvino, a Hollywood star in her own right, wrote on Twitter: “My father, the great Paul Sorvino has passed away.
“My heart is broken – a life of love, joy and wisdom with him is over.”
“He was the most wonderful father. I love him so much. Sending you love in the stars, Dad, as you soar.”
When she won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the 1995 film The Mighty Aphrodite, she thanked her father in her acceptance speech. “He taught me everything I know about acting,” she said at the time, which brought him to tears.
“I am completely devastated. The love of my life and the most wonderful man who ever lived is gone. I am heartbroken,” his wife Di Di Sorvino wrote on social media.
Paul Sorvino died of natural causes at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., a spokesman said.
In May of this year his co-star in the 1990 film Goodfellas, Ray Liotta, has died at 67 in his sleep while shooting a movie in the Dominican Republic.
At 6 feet 2 inches tall, Sorvino had an imposing presence at work.
Among his other notable roles were mob boss Eddie Valentine in 1991’s The Rocketeer and the role of former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger in Oliver Stone’s 1995 film Nixon, about disgraced former President Richard Nixon, played by Anthony Hopkins.
A year later, in Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet, he was Fulgencio Capulet, patriarch of the Capulets.
He also played an Italian American Communist in Warren Beatty’s Reds.
Sorvino has worked steadily, with more than 170 credits and dozens of roles in recent years, including guest appearances on The Godfather of Harlem, Bad Blood, Undercover, Goldberg and Criminal Minds.
He often said that although he was best known for playing gangsters, his true passions were poetry, painting and opera.
He was born in Brooklyn in 1939 and attended the American Academy of Music and Drama in New York.
He originally wanted to be an opera singer before turning to acting.
In the 1970s, he starred alongside Al Pacino in The Panic in Needle Park and with James Caan in The Gambler.
His long career also includes roles in the Broadway play That Championship Season and its 1982 film adaptation.
Other film credits include Dick Tracy and Money Talks.
Along with his wife Dee Dee and Oscar winner Mira, Sorvino is survived by his son Michael, daughter Amanda and five grandchildren.
Paul Sorvino: Goodfellas and Law and Order actor dies at 83 | Ents & Arts News
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