Soprano Sue's Sightings
 


 

 

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Robert Funaro plays the character of Eugene Pontecorvo  on The Sopranos.   

Robert Funaro presently resides in Brooklyn, New York. He was born on January 23, 1959.   I had an opportunity to ask Robert Funaro, a few questions about his life and The Sopranos.

Tell us a little about where you grew up.

I grew up in Brooklyn and Staten Island  

Are you Italian and what part of Italy is your family from?

Yes, I am Italian. My family was from Naples.  My great grand father’s family lived at the foot of Vesuvius.    They were farmers from the Providence which is called Ottavaiano. 

What inspired you to be an actor?  

A film called Lord Jim, with Peter O Toole

Bobby Funaro and James Gandolfini

What was you first acting job like and how did it happen?

 

My first acting job was "Born Yesterday" at William Paterson College.   My teacher, from HB Studios, Carol Rosenfeld got me the job.

What event (in you acting career) helped cement your decision, to pursue acting as a full time career?

Being cast in the The Sopranos

You also run an actors theater lab, tell us a little about it and how that became of being?

We meet every Tuesday, where I direct actors.    We also look to develop new plays, which are truly meaningful and interesting. It is named Zampano.    I named it this from a character, in Frederico Fellini’s 1954 movie, La Strada.    Anthony Quinn’s character’s name in the movie was Zampano.     

Do you watch a lot of TV?  If so, what's your favorite TV show?

No particular show, but I my favorite channel is Animal Planet,   

Do you like to read?  If so what are a few of your favorite books?

I like to read, The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera and  Mistero Buffo by Dario Fo, are two of my favorites.

Name some of your favorite foods and how you like them prepared?

I love a great wonderful Sunday sauce, that just satisfies, the meatballs and bracciole,   

Do you cook at all? 

I love to cook

What are some of your hobbies?

Gardening, especially bonsai trees

What are your plans after The Sopranos?

Continue acting and try directing, possibly making a film

 Robert FunaroDo you or would you do any independent films?

You can’t put a label on what one does I’ll do anything that is meaningful true and interesting. Things that are worthwhile doing, you should do. Independent is like the 60’s marches, a stereotype

 If you were deserted on a desert island (and I don’t mean Staten Island), and could only take one music compact disk, what would your choices be?

 Abbey Road by the Beatles

 What charities are you involved in?

HIV , Lisa Landi, Long Island Jewish Medical Center  in Long Island,    Our Lady Queen of Martyrs from Forest Hills, and Unicef .   

Tell us something the people don't know about you.

I hope to come back in my next life as a Thelonious Monk.

   For more on Robert Funaro

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Christine Nagy and Robert Funaro