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Joseph R. Gannascoli AkA "Joe Soup"
Gannascoli in June 2011
|Born||February 15, 1959|
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
|Occupation||Actor, chef, spokesman|
Joseph R. Gannascoli (born February 15, 1959) is an American actor, most notable for his portrayal of Vito Spatafore on the HBO series The Sopranos. Prior to acting, Gannascoli was a professional chef.
Gannascoli was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. In the 1980s, he attended St. John's University for two years, majoring in communications. He began his cooking career at Manhattan Market in 1981, before leaving to work at Commander's Palace in New Orleans, and then at various restaurants around the country.
Gannascoli received his "big break" in acting from Benicio del Toro, whom he met on the set on Money for Nothing. After appearing in Ed Wood, Del Toro later cast Gannascoli in his directorial debut, Submission. He also introduced him to Sheila Jaffe and Georgianne Walken, who did casting work for the HBO TV series The Sopranos.
Gannascoli appeared in films including Mickey Blue Eyes and television shows including Law and Order before appearing on The Sopranos as a pastry shop patron named "Gino" in the season one episode "The Legend of Tennessee Moltisanti". He later secured a recurring role as the nephew of Richie Aprile, Vito Spatafore, in the season two episode "The Happy Wanderer". Along with Dan Grimaldi playing identical twins Patsy and Phillip "Philly Spoons" Parisi and Saundra Santiago playing identical twins Jeannie and Joannie Cusamano, it was one of the three times that the show used a single actor for separate roles. Prior to the start of Season 6, Gannascoli was promoted to series regular. The writers brought the idea of making his character gay from a true story of the Gambino crime family, in a book called Murder Machine.
|1993||Money for Nothing||Charlie DiSalvio|
|1994||Ed Wood||Security Guard|
|1995||Never Talk to Strangers||Carnival Attendant|
|1996||The Funeral||Rocco (uncredited)|
|1996||Basquiat||Guard at Hospital|
|1999||Mickey Blue Eyes||Jimmy, Gina's Doorman|
|1999–2006||The Sopranos||Gino the Bakery Customer, Vito Spatafore|
|2005||Meet the Mobsters||Abner Hunnicutt|
|2006||Beer League||Giusuppe Primavera (uncredited)|
|2012||Men in Black 3||New York Mets Fan #2|
|2014||Rob the Mob||Dom|
|2015||An Act of War||Frank|
|2017||Jason's Letter||Principle (Pratt) Prattoli|
- "Soprano’s Cast Member in Town to Promote Cigar Line and Chat About Film and Food", Chicago Press Release Services, May 11, 2010
- "Gay 'Sopranos' mobster finds a bit of fame". Today.com. April 10, 2006.
- A Meal to Die For: A Culinary Novel of Crime, Amazon.com, accessed June 7, 2011.
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