The Sopranos’ subject matter made it a bit difficult to find filming locations

The Sopranos’ subject matter made it a bit difficult to find filming locations


“The Sopranos” was always somewhat controversial, and that controversy made things difficult for Ilene Landess, a producer and production manager for the show. Speaking with Michael Imperioli (who played Christopher) and Steve Schirripa (who played Bobby) for their book “Woke Up This Morning: The Definitive Oral History of the Sopranos,” Landress talked about the first time they had trouble securing a shooting location for a film. stage.

The scene in question was one of the show’s many, many funeral scenes, this one taking place in the middle of the penultimate episode of the first season, “Isabella”. It was originally filmed in an Italian funeral parlor in Little Italy. However, they didn’t get to finish filming the scene in that funeral home, because they were kicked out of the location halfway through. Why? Well, it might have had something to do with what Uncle Junior (Dominic Chianese) said in the middle of the funeral. As Landess explained:

“There’s the scene where the guys show respect to an old lady lying in the coffin. You see Uncle Junior look into the coffin and he turns to someone and says, ‘She gave me my first hand job.'” And we were kicked out of the place .”

In fairness to the funeral home, they wouldn’t be the last to have anything to do with the show. “The other problem was shootings in Catholic churches,” Landess admitted. – They don’t like us very much either. Well, it wasn’t the churches themselves, so much as the archdiocese of the church that wouldn’t give them permission. “They want family friendly. Kind of like Major League Baseball.”

Not much baseball in the Sopranos


While it’s easy to see why a church would want nothing to do with “The Sopranos,” Major League Baseball was a more surprising holdout. In the season 5 episode “All Happy Families”, there is a scene where Tony (James Gandolfini) is watching baseball on TV with a couple of the other characters. Usually in a scene like this, the audience would at least get a glimpse of what the characters are watching on TV, but that never happens here. As Ilene Landess explained, “We couldn’t get permission to use Major League Baseball footage in the show because it’s not a family-friendly show, so to speak.”

It’s a line of reasoning that makes sense until you remember all the other companies that were okay with being featured on the show. So, MLB didn’t want “The Sopranos” with footage from any of their games, but Nintendo was fine with Tony, the mob boss, playing Mario Kart with his son? Something is not right here.

Showrunner David Chase also seemed to think it was unfair because he ended up writing his annoyance with MLB into his script. “There’s a line in the script where Artie says ‘F*** Major League Baseball.’ Let’s look at ballet,” Landess said. “When David got pissed off, if we couldn’t pull off something we wanted, we worked it right into the dialogue.” It’s the kind of information that makes you wonder if an orange juice company someone time the show stumbled too, but we’ll never know for sure.

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The post The Sopranos’ Subject Matter Made Finding Filming Locations A Little Tricky appeared first on /Film.

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