Veteran American actor Frank Vincent, who starred as gangster Phil Leotardo in The Sopranos, has died at the age of 78.
Known for his “tough guy” roles, Vincent played Tony Soprano’s nemesis in the hit TV show. He first rose to fame with memorable characters in several Martin Scorsese films – including Goodfellas.
The actor reportedly suffered complications during open heart surgery following a heart attack earlier this week.
Born in Massachusetts to a family of Italian descent and raised in New Jersey, Vincent proved perfect for Hollywood’s stock of mafia roles and gangsters.
He made his acting debut in 1976 in the movie Death Collector by director Ralph DeVito alongside Joe Pesci. He soon caught the eye of Robert De Niro and then Scorsese, who cast him in Raging Bull.
A decade later, Vincent appeared in Goodfellas as Billy Batts, a mafia man who ended up being beaten to death by Joe Pesci’s Tommy DeVito. He will be remembered for one of the film’s best lines: “Now go home and get your f***in’ shine box….”
In Scorsese’s Casino (1995), Vincent reunited with his old pal and co-star Pesci, serving as his sidekick.
The two were due to share the screen once again in Asbury Park, due in 2018.
Frank Vincent is survived by his wife Kathleen and three children.