Paul Sorvino, an imposing actor, specialising in playing crooks and cops like Paulie Cicero in “Goodfellas” and NYPD sergeant Phil Cerreta in “Law & Order,” has died. He was 83.
His publicist Roger Neal said he died Monday morning of natural causes at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. Sorvino has dealt with health issues over the past few years.
Mira Sorvino, his daughter, wrote a tribute on Twitter: “My father, the great Paul Sorvino, has passed. My heart is rent asunder- a life of love, joy, and wisdom with him is over. He was the most wonderful father. I love him so much. I’m sending you to love in the stars, Dad, as you ascend.”
Many responded to Mira Sorvino’s tweet with condolences and sympathy. Jane Lynch wrote, “Your father sang ‘Danny Boy’ for my Aunt Marge at The Chicago Film Critics Awards in 2012. We all cried.” Rob Reiner, who appeared in one of his father’s films with Sorvino, said he was sending love. Lorraine Bracco tweeted two broken heart emojis.
In his over 50 years in the entertainment business, Sorvino was a mainstay in films and television, playing an Italian American communist in Warren Beatty’s “Reds,” Henry Kissinger in Oliver Stone’s “Nixon”, and mob boss Eddie Valentine in “The Rocketeer.” He often said that while he might be best known for playing gangsters (and his perfect system for slicing garlic), his real passions were poetry, painting and opera.