David Chase backed out of The Many Saints of Newark after heart attack

By Sam Moore

David Chase has revealed that he did not direct The Sopranos prequel, The Many Saints of Newark, after suffering a heart attack.

In an interview with Deadline, The Sopranos creator says: “I was supposed to direct it, but then all these illnesses, I backed out of that part.”

Chase confirmed that his illness was a heart attack and that his wife was also sick around the same time: “I was continuing to do stuff, but it kind of stopped when my wife became ill. Then I had a heart attack.”

Because of Chase’s health issues, Alan Taylor, who directed numerous episodes of the series, was brought in to oversee the film.

On Taylor, who also directed Thor: The Dark World and Terminator Genisys, Chase says: “Of all the directors on The Sopranos, the good ones, of which he was one, I argued with him more than any of them. And yet, he did some of my favorite episodes.”

Chase also added: “He has a great eye.”

The Many Saints of Newark, which is released in the UK on 22 October, stars Alessandro Nivola, Vera Farmiga, Ray Liotta, Jon Bernthal and Leslie Odom Jr.

Michael Gandolfini, the son of James Gandolfini, who played Tony Soprano in the original series, will also play a younger version of the same character.

Michael Gandolfini as a young Tony Soprano in ‘The Many Saints of Newark' (HBO Max)

The younger Gandolfini said agreeing to be in the film was “probably the toughest decision I’ve ever had to make”.

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