Paul Sorvino Dead: ‘Goodfellas’ Star Dies At 83 With His Wife By His Side

The actor who was most-well known for playing Paul Cicero in the classic mob movie passed away in Indiana on Monday.

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Paul Sorvino died on Monday at age 83 in his home Indiana. The classic actor’s passing was announced in a statement by his wife Dee Dee Benkie, who was by his side. “Our hearts are broken, there will never be another Paul Sorvino, he was the love of my life, and one of the greatest performers to ever grace the screen and stage,” she said, per The Associated Press

Paul was a beloved actor for over 50 years. (Shutterstock)

Paul was born in 1939 in Brooklyn, and he began acting on Broadway in the 1960s, with his first show being in 1964. Beginning his movie career in 1970 with a small role in Where’s Poppa? Paul had over 100 acting credits to his name, and took on an array of roles. Despite playing a variety of different characters, his most well-known role was playing Paul Cicero in the Martin Scorsese-directed classic Goodfellas in 1990.  While Paul played a variety of different roles, he was still closely associated with the mob movie character that so many people were fans of, with one of his most recent roles being in The Godfather of Harlem, from 2019 to 2021. He also played mobsters in The Rocketeer (1991) and The Firm (1993).

Despite being most associated with the Goodfellas role, Paul pushed against the fact that he was often typecast and wanted people to view him as more than just a mafioso. “Most people think I’m either a gangster or a cop or something, but the reality is I’m a sculptor, a painter, a best-selling author, many, many things – a poet, an opera singer, but none of them is gangster, but, you know, obviously I sort of have a knack for playing these things,” he told Orlando Weekly in 2014. “It would be nice to have my legacy more than that of just tough guy.”

Aside from playing a wiseguy, Paul had a wide range and could play a number of different roles. One of his most famous parts came in 1995 when he played Henry Kissinger in the Oliver Stone-directed Nixon. With his training to be an opera singer, Paul also showed off his musical ability in the industrial sci-fi film Repo! The Genetic Opera (2008) or the horror musical Alleluia! The Devil’s Carnival (2016).

Aside from acting, Paul also did a bit of work behind the camera. He directed two episodes of the series That’s Life, which he also starred in, as well as the TV movie That Championship Season (1999) and the comedy The Trouble With Cali (2012). At the time of his passing, Paul still had a few unreleased projects. Pursued, The Ride, and My Jurrasic Place are all yet to be released and listed on his IMDb page.

Paul continued to take on roles into his 80s. (Shutterstock)

Throughout his life, Paul was married three times. His first wife was Lorraine Davis from 1966 to 1988, and the pair shared three kids: Oscar-winning actress Mira Sorvino, 54, writer and actress Amanda, 51, and actor Michael, 44. His second wife was Vanessa Arico from 1991 to 1996. He wed Dee Dee in 2014.

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