Fourteen years after the end of the mysterious and divisive series, the first look at new Sopranos content has arrived.
The first trailer for The Many Saints of Newark, the prequel to the series largely regarded as the cornerstone of prestigious cable television, reveals young Tony Soprano – played by Michael Gandolfini’s son – evolving into a future steel mob boss against the backdrop of The 1967 race riots in Newark, New Jersey.
Produced in part by series creator David Chase and directed by Alan Taylor, a first look at New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. shows young Tony floundering at school (no surprise to his mother, played by Vera Farmiga) but thriving in the shadow of his beloved uncle’s ward, Dicky Multisanti ( Alessandro Nivola).
The film depicts Young Tony “bringing up in one of the most turbulent eras in Newark history, becoming a man just as rival gangsters begin to rise and challenge the control of the powerful criminal Dimo family over an increasingly race-riven city,” according to the official synopsis. “Stuck in the changing times is his adored uncle, Dickie Multisanti, who struggles to manage his professional and personal responsibilities—whose influence on his impressionable nephew will help position the teen into the powerful gang boss we’ll later come to know.”
The trailer also features a stacked cast, including Hamilton Leslie Odom Jr., Jon Berthal, Cory Stoll, Billy Magnussen, Jon Magaro, Michela De Rossi and Goodfellas star Ray Liotta.
True to Soprano’s form, the trailer alludes to a range of violence, from guns to punches to what appears to be a saw, as well as racial tensions between black and white gangs in Newark, where the 1967 riots killed 26 people and injured more than 700 over the course of four days. as one of 159 race riots during the tense “Long Hot Summer of 1967” in America.
Chase, who told Deadline in February 2019 that he “has been an opponent of the film for a very long time, and I’m still very concerned about it,” is interested in exploring Tony’s childhood against the backdrop of the racial tension that erupted during his youth in New Jersey. “I was living in suburban New Jersey at the time this happened, and my girlfriend was working in downtown Newark,” he said. “I was only interested in the whole Newark riot thing. I started thinking about those events and organized crime, and I just got interested in mixing those two things.”
He’ll film when he did well,” Chase said. “The mafia was very polished at the time, how they dressed and what they did. These traditions were loosely followed in the chain. These were not the sporty men, back then.”
Michael Gandolfini, who was 14 when his father died of a heart attack in 2013 while on vacation in Rome, told Vanity Fair earlier this year that the film is “an origin story from the point of view of Dickie Multisanti, Christopher’s father. Tony Soprano who We know he has this beautiful vulnerability under him and that tough exterior, but what if we turned that on his side and watched a creative, optimistic, kind, inquisitive kid turn into what he ought to be?”
Preparing to step into his father’s legendary shoes, the 22-year-old actor, who had never seen an episode of The Sopranos, watched all six seasons in six weeks and listened for hours of his father’s monologues. “I had this unspoken confidence that David [Chase] “He wouldn’t dump me if there was even a small piece that wouldn’t work,” he told Vanity Fair.
Originally slated for a theatrical release in September 2020, the film, delayed due to the pandemic, will be released in US theaters on October 1 and will be available to stream on HBO Max for 31 days thereafter. UK date to be confirmed.