Paul Sorvino’s daughter leads tributes to ‘talented and giving’ Goodfellas star

·4-min read

Actress Mira Sorvino has led tributes to her father – the “talented and giving” Goodfellas star Paul Sorvino – who has died at age 83.

The actor played Paul Cicero in the classic 1990 crime film alongside Robert De Niro and Ray Liotta, as well as playing Sergeant Phil Cerreta in the TV series Law & Order.

Sorvino died on Monday from “natural causes” with his wife Dee Dee Sorvino by his side, having dealt with health issues over the past few years.

A statement released by Sorvino’s publicist Roger Neal on behalf of his wife said: “Our hearts are broken, there will never be another Paul Sorvino, he was the love of my life, and one of the greatest performers to ever grace the screen and stage.”

His daughter and actress Mira described him as “the most wonderful father” in an emotional tribute on social media.

She wrote on Twitter: “My father, the great Paul Sorvino has passed. My heart is rent asunder- a life of love and joy and wisdom with him is over.

“He was the most wonderful father. I love him so much. I’m sending you love in the stars Dad as you ascend.”

Bracco, who starred alongside Sorvino in Martin Scorsese’s film Goodfellas, wrote in her tribute that she was “so sad” to hear of his passing while offering her condolences to his family and loved ones.

Law and Order director Vincent D’Onofrio said the actor had always treated him “like a younger brother”.

Paul and Dee Dee Sorvino (Neal Public Relations/PA)
Paul and Dee Dee Sorvino (Neal Public Relations/PA)

“I’ll miss Paul, Mira,” he wrote in response to Ms Sorvino’s tweet.

“My heart goes out to you. Your father always treated me like a younger brother.

“I’ll never forget Paul Sorvino.”

Actor Chazz Palminteri, who starred in A Bronx Tale and Bullets Over Broadway said he was “broken-hearted” by the news.

“I lost my good friend Paul Sorvino, a true renaissance man,” he said.

“Actor, Writer, Director, opera singer, sculptor… He was one of a kind… Rest in peace my friend, the world will miss you.”

Oscar-winning actress Marlee Matlin wrote: “I feel so fortunate that I had a chance to work with the great Paul Sorvino.

“And now I am so sad to read of his passing. Not only was he kind, he was so talented and so giving as an actor.

“I am sending my love to Mira and the rest of the family. He will definitely be missed. RIP.”

Actor Brent Spiner also sent his condolences to Mira and her family following the news, describing Sorvino as “very talented” and “fun to be around”.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, on April 13 1939, Sorvino started off as an advertising copywriter in an ad agency but attended the American Musical and Dramatic Academy and decided to go into theatre.

Sorvino made his Broadway debut in the 1964 musical Bajour and six years later appeared in his first film, Carl Reiner’s Where’s Poppa?

In 1971 Sorvino played a supporting role in the drama film The Panic In Needle Park starring Al Pacino.

He also received a Tony nomination for his performance in Jason Miller’s 1972 Broadway play That Championship Season, later reprising the role in the feature film version.

Sorvino also had a standout supporting role in the Academy Award-winning film A Touch Of Class.

However, he was best known for starring as Paul Cicero, aka Big Pauly, in Martin Scorsese’s film Goodfellas.

Oscars Vanity Fair Paul Sorvino
Actor Paul Sorvino (William Conran/PA)

He also featured in a string of films including Nixon, Dick Tracy, The Rocketeer, For The Love Of Money, Reds and Oh, God!

Sorvino married his wife, actress and TV host Dee Dee, in 2014 after a chance meeting on the Neil Cavuto show on the Fox News Channel Network.

The actor is survived by his wife, his three adult children Mira, Amanda, Michael and five grandchildren.

Sorvino’s death is the latest in a spate of recent high-profile deaths of actors in the mobster movie genre.

Tony Sirico, James Caan, and Liotta have all died within the last three months.

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