When it comes to music and movies, a rule of thumb that I think people should generally follow is don’t fuck with the original. It’s that simple. How many times have we seen something great get completely ruined because people got greedy and milked it dry? Remakes and sequels suck sweaty balls 99% of the time, but on extremely rare occasions they’re done correctly and are an interesting and acceptable addition to whatever the original thing in question was. It appears that one such thing like this is on it’s way, as David Chase, creator of the hit crime drama The Sopranos, confirmed that a long rumored prequel movie is in the works that will be called The Many Saints Of Newark. As if this news couldn’t get any better, Chase dropped another bombshell and answered a question many Sopranos fans had on their minds: Yes, a youthful Tony Soprano will appear in the film
If you haven’t seen The Sopranos, don’t worry because this isn’t a spoilers blog. However, you need to get on that immediately because it’s widely considered one of, if not the best, crime shows of all time for a reason. Actually fuck it, it is the best. My apologies to The Wire and Breaking Bad for breaking the news so publicly, but it’s the truth and I can’t hold it in any longer. Tony Soprano is the greatest anti-hero in TV history and it isn’t even close, and most importantly, thank you to the late great James Gandolfini for playing the role perfectly. The Wire and Breaking Bad are great shows, and we can still be friends if you want, but my heart fully belongs to The Sopranos now (Mainly Carmela’s fine ass). Anyway, back to this prequel. It is currently in the works and will be directed by Alan Taylor, who directed the majority of Sopranos episodes. As for the script, it was written collaboratively by David Chase and Lawrence Konner, who is a writer for the show Boardwalk Empire. So far, so good. They haven’t gone into too much detail, but the setting of the movie is Newark, New Jersey in the 1960’s. David Chase became interested in doing this movie because of his research into Newark in that time period, mainly because that’s where his parents are from. If you know your history, you know that Newark was a hotbed of racial tension in the 60’s, reaching it’s zenith in the Newark Race Riots of 1967. The riot lasted for 4 days, and by the end of it 26 people were dead, over 700 were injured, and close to 1,500 were arrested. Knowing this, you can assume that’s going to be a huge part of the movie, along with the “Golden Age” of organized crime obviously. I don’t know about you, but it sounds pretty badass to me already.
Envisioning the mixture of racial tension and organized crime, along with the fact that a young Tony will be in the movie, has me more excited than a junkie with his arm tied off. My excitement mainly stems from the fact that some of my favorite Sopranos episodes were the ones that contained mini flashbacks to Tony’s childhood. Seeing Tony’s dad Johnny and his Uncle Junior control the streets of Newark was awesome, and I’m also curious what role Christopher’s father, Dickie Moltisanti, will play in this movie. He is already deceased by the time the show begins so his character is known exclusively through stories, but you can assume he’s going to be important. After all, Moltisanti loosely translates to “Many Saints”. 3 other characters I can’t wait to see during this time period are Paulie, Hesh, and Mrs. Soprano. I always wished The Sopranos had more episodes that featured scenes from back in the day, and it appears that my prayers have been answered. Instead of just a few flashbacks here and there, I’m gonna get to watch a whole movie about it. There are also many names and references to things from the past that never really get explained in detail during the show, and I feel like this movie gives the perfect platform to plug in some of these mini details for the fans to enjoy and understand better. I could speculate about this all day, and although there’s not even a tentative release date yet, that day can’t get here soon enough. I don’t want The Many Saints Of Newark, I NEED THE MANY SAINTS OF NEWARK!