Skip to main content

From the mouth of Tony Soprano: 'We're soldiers'

By CNN Staff
June 22, 2013 -- Updated 1359 GMT (2159 HKT)
James Gandolfini, who gained fame playing a memorable mafia boss on HBO's "The Sopranos," died after suffering a heart attack in Italy on Wednesday, June 19. Pictured, Gandolfini at the premiere of "Zero Dark Thirty" in 2012. James Gandolfini, who gained fame playing a memorable mafia boss on HBO's "The Sopranos," died after suffering a heart attack in Italy on Wednesday, June 19. Pictured, Gandolfini at the premiere of "Zero Dark Thirty" in 2012.
HIDE CAPTION
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • James Gandolfini played Tony Soprano on the HBO hit show "The Sopranos"
  • Tony Sorprano's lines routinely struck a chord for their frankness, humor, depth
  • Gandonfini, who died in Italy, had notable roles in films like "Crimson Tide," "8MM"
  • More recently, he played the CIA director in the critically acclaimed "Zero Dark Thirty"

(CNN) -- Tony Soprano was a bully and a lover, a lightning rod and a superstar. And thanks to scripts crafted by David Chase and others, he was also, at times, prophetic, wise, even poetic.

Here are a few of Tony Soprano's many choice lines during "The Sopranos" acclaimed run on HBO, compiled from IMDB.com and TVfanatic.com and spoken by actor James Gandolfini, who died in Italy while on holiday.

-- Talking to his psychiatrist: "We're soldiers. Soldiers don't go to hell. It's war. Soldiers kill other soldiers. We're in a situation where everyone involved knows the stakes and if you are going to accept those stakes, you've got to do certain things. It's business."

Appreciation: Gandolfini, a pure actor

-- From another conversation with his psychiatrist, Dr. Melfi: "This isn't painful. Getting shot is painful. Getting stabbed in the ribs is painful. This ... isn't painful. It's empty. Dead."

When the news broke on Wednesday that "The Sopranos" star James Gandolfini died at 51, tributes poured in around the world, including CNN iReport. "So long, paisan" was how Orlando, Florida, resident Pat Tantalo chose to say goodbye to the friend he met on the set of the 2006 film "Lonely Hearts." "When Jimmy arrived, he was bigger than life. He shook everyone's hands and made sure he learned everyone's name. We were just finishing a production meeting and we introduced ourselves. We instantly connected. He planted his huge mitts on my shoulders and called me a little bull." When the news broke on Wednesday that "The Sopranos" star James Gandolfini died at 51, tributes poured in around the world, including CNN iReport. "So long, paisan" was how Orlando, Florida, resident Pat Tantalo chose to say goodbye to the friend he met on the set of the 2006 film "Lonely Hearts." "When Jimmy arrived, he was bigger than life. He shook everyone's hands and made sure he learned everyone's name. We were just finishing a production meeting and we introduced ourselves. We instantly connected. He planted his huge mitts on my shoulders and called me a little bull."
'So long, paisan:' Fans mourn Gandolfini
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
>
>>
\'So long, paisan:\' Fans mourn Gandolfini 'So long, paisan:' Fans mourn Gandolfini
Click through to see people who passed away in 2013. Click through to see people who passed away in 2013.
People we lost in 2013
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
>
>>
Photos: People we lost in 2013 Photos: People we lost in 2013
Friends react to Gandolfini's death
2000: 'Sopranos' success surprised me
Gupta: 51 is young for a heart attack

-- Speaking to his wife, Carmela: "You're only religious when it suits you."

-- Speaking to Christopher Moltisanti, the cousin of Tony Soprano's wife and part of his inner circle: "Blood. You're going to lead this family into the 21st century."

-- In response to Dr. Melfi's question, after he threatens to smash her face during a therapy session: "Is this a woman thing? You ask me how I'm feeling. I tell you how I'm feeling, and now you're going to torture me with it."

-- Referring to his mother's involvement in a plot to kill him: "What kind of person can I be, where his own mother wants him dead?

-- Speaking again to Dr. Melfi: "The things I take pleasure in, I can't do."

Of course, Tony Soprano was just one of many roles that Gandolfini played in his decades-long career. With his large frame and, at times, intimidating sneer, he cast a big shadow in numerous movie, television and theater productions before his death this week in Italy.

Below are some notable quotes that he uttered in a few of those roles.

Opinion: Gandolfini's gift to television -- and America

-- As CIA director in 2012's "Zero Dark Thirty," talking about intelligence related to a compound where Osama bin Laden is later killed: "Can't you put a camera somewhere -- in the trees -- to get a look into the main house? ... We have to get a look into the house."

-- As the monster Carol to the young boy "king" Max in the 2009 movie adaptation of "Where the Wild Things Are": "This used to be all rock, and now it's sand. And then, one day, it's going to be dust. And then the whole island will be dust. And then ... well, I don't even know what comes after dust."

-- As Eddie Poole, challenging another character to kill him in 1999's "8MM": "What are you waiting for? Go ahead, do it! ... What do you want me to do, start crying like a little baby? 'Oh, I'm sorry I killed the little girl.' Well, f--k you and f--k her! Go ahead! Put me outta my f----ing misery!"

-- As Lt. Bobby Daughtert in 1995's "Crimson Tide" questioning a new first officer, Hunter, who'd challenged their submarine's captain: "We've been following the captain for years, and now this a--hole Hunter shows up, and we're supposed to follow him because he said so?"

-- As Virgil, a deranged mobster, in 1993's "True Romance": "Now the first time you kill somebody, that's the hardest.... The second one ain't no f---in' Mardi Gras either, but it's better than the first one... The third one is easy, you level right off. It's no problem."

Read: Entertainers, politicians mourn Gandolfini

Read: 'Sopranos,' Gandolfini left mark on N.J. businesses

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT