In the wake of his passing on June 19 at the age of 51, Bravo will remember actor James Gandolfini by re-airing his memorable 2004 appearance with James Lipton on Inside the Actors Studio a few times over the next week.
On a blog on the Bravo website, following James Gandolfini’s death, James Lipton weighed in, remembering the actor’s appearance on his show.
“When James Gandolfini was on Inside the Actors Studio,” Lipton told the site, “our students discovered how thoughtful the real James was. And how caring he was about the craft he practiced so effortlessly that it didn’t look like acting at all. Like all of the finest actors, James convinced you that whatever you were seeing and hearing was just James being James, with no artifice or design. In fact, it was James being precisely what the writer had written and the director had asked for. We’ve lost a wonderfully skilled actor.”
Lipton often asks his guests what God would say to them when they arrived at the Pearly Gates, and in his 2004 appearance, Gandolfini had one of the more memorable answers.
“[God would say] take over for a while, I’ll be right back,” Gandolfini joked, before saying, “No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no —”
“That’s it!” Lipton interjected, with Gandolfini still saying, “”No, no, no, no —”
“You dare not change [your answer],” Lipton said. “It’s too good, it’s too good. It’s one of the best we’ve ever had.”
“Think of the possibilities,” Gandolfini then mused.
Inside the Actors Studio: James Gandolfini will air on Bravo June 23 at 6pm; June 24 at 3am; June 24 at 10:30am; and June 26 at 6pm ET/PT.
James Gandolfini: Nancy Kaszerman/ZUMA Press/NEWSCOM