Movies & TV / News

David Chase Looks Back on Sopranos Finale, Talks Prequel Film

January 8, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Sopranos Finale

David Chase recently looked back on the infamous series finale of The Sopranos and referred to the last scene as a “death scene.” As Uproxx notes, Chase spoke with Alan Sepinwall and Matt Zoller Seitz for the new book The Sopranos Sessions, which was released today to coincide with the show’s twentieth anniversary, and talked about the final episode.

In the final scene of the series, Tony Soprano (James Gandolfini) and his family meet for dunner after Tony is told by his lawyers that subpoenas are on the way. As most of the family sits in a booth, a man who had clocked Tony from the counter gets up and enters the restroom opposite their table, leading the viewer to suspect he is there to kill Tony. Just before anything could happen, the screen cut to black for a few seconds before credits rolled.

Chase has resisted attempts by people to get him to confirm the scene as depicting Tony’s impending death for years, though it appears as if he slipped up during the conversation. “I think I had that death scene around two years before the end,” he said. “I remember talking with [Sopranos writer and executive producer] Mitch Burgess about it. But it wasn’t — it was slightly different,” Chase said. “Tony was going to get called to a meeting with Johnny Sack in Manhattan, and he was going to go back through the Lincoln Tunnel for this meeting, and it as going to go black there and you never saw him again as he was heading back, the theory being that something bad happens to him at the meeting. But we didn’t do that.”

When the two writers pointed out Chase’s use of the word “death scene” in the interview, Chase pauses and replies, “F**k you guys.” Chase said that the point wasn’t that Tony did or didn’t die, but that he could have been killed. When asked if viewer would be wrong to say that Tony was murdered, Chase said, “I’m not going to answer that question.”

The series is set to receive a prequel film written and produced by Chase, called The Many Saints of Newark. Chase told Deadline that the film “will deal with the tensions between the blacks and whites at the time, and Tony Soprano will be part of this, but as a kid.”

He added, “I was against [a movie] for a long time and I’m still very worried about it, but I became interested in Newark, where my parents came from, and where the riots took place. I was living in suburban New Jersey at the time that happened, and my girlfriend was working in downtown Newark. I was just interested in the whole Newark riot thing. I started thinking about those events and organized crime, and I just got interested in mixing those two elements.”