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Genaro Anthony "Tony" Sirico, Jr. (born July 29 1942) is an Americanmarker character actor who is most famous for his role as Paulie Gualtieri in the television series The Sopranos.

Background and career

Sirico was born in Midwood, Brooklyn to Sicilian parents. Sirico has played gangsters in a number of films, including Mob Queen, Gangsters, Love and Money, Fingers, The Last Fight, Goodfellas, Innocent Blood, Bullets Over Broadway, The Pick-up Artist, Mighty Aphrodite, Gotti, Cop Land, and Mickey Blue Eyes. He also played policemen in the films Dead Presidents and Deconstructing Harry.

Before turning to acting, Sirico was reportedly a mob associate of the Colombo crime family serving under Carmine "Junior" Persico and had been arrested twenty-eight times. There is a Sopranos reference to this fact when Paulie says "I made it through the seventies by the skin of my nuts when the Colombos were goin' at it." In 1967, he was sent to prison for robbing a Brooklyn after hours club, but was released after serving thirteen months. In 1971, he pled guilty to felony weapons possession and was sentenced to an "indeterminate" prison term of up to four years, of which Sirico ended up serving twenty months. In an interview in Cigar Aficionado magazine, Sirico said that during his imprisonment, he was visited by an acting troupe composed of ex-cons, which inspired him to give acting a try. According to a court transcript, at the time of his sentencing, he also had pending charges for drug possession.

He currently lives alone in Brooklyn, New Yorkmarker. His mother died in 2003. Sirico's brother, Robert Sirico, is a priest and co-founder of the free-market Acton Institute.

Involvement in politics

Sirico has stated that politically he is a "far-to-the-right Republican." He donated $1000 to Rudolph Giuliani's presidential campaign.

In popular culture

Other acting work by Sirico:
  • Sirico did the voice for Big Daddy (a mafia fairy) in the series The Fairly OddParents.
  • Sirico has also done a voice-over for a SpongeBob SquarePants episode.
  • Sirico's voice is used for his TV character in the video game The Sopranos: Road to Respect.
  • Sirico has been cast as a bit player in Woody Allen movies.
  • Sirico also appeared in stacker-2 commercials with some featuring the superstars of World Wrestling Entertainment.
  • Sirico played the lead role of the boss in the video "Slang Editorial" by Cappadonna of the Wu-Tang Clan. At the end of the video, Sirico's character is killed by Cappadonna.
  • Sirico also played in an episode of Miami Vice.
  • Sirico played a mafia boss in an early '90s Dunkin Donuts commercial.
  • Sirico has recently played Paulie Walnuts in a couple of Denny's commercials.
  • In her recent television series, State of the Union, Tracey Ullman parodies Sirico as a foul-mouthed actor, who is "expanding his range" after the success of The Sopranos' character.
  • Sirico made a guest appearance as himself on the ESPN internet show "Mayne Street", starring Kenny Mayne.
  • Sirico played the role as Paulie Walnuts in a commercial for one of Swedens biggest papers "Aftonbladet".


  1. Sirico's most acclaimed acting job was that of Paulie "Walnuts" Gualtieri in David Chase's Emmy award winning drama, The Sopranos. Tony Sirico
  2. "Artie's Goose Is Coked", New York Post, May 2, 2006
  3. From Sing Sing to Bada Bing,, accessed July 17, 2007.
  4. [1]
  5. 'Soprano' Makes a Killing for Bush
He appears in a documentary about life, The Big Bang by James Toback

External links

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