The show that brought cinematic quality and real-world credibility to living-room programming is finally back.
Creator of The Sopranos and seven-time Emmy winner David Chase recently sold a script to New Line entitled The Many Saints of Newark, a prequel movie that will send fans back to the gritty suburban sprawl of North Jersey.
The tentative plot for the film hinges on the 1967 Newark race riots — after the police beat a black cab driver named John Smith — and the violence that ensued between the city’s Italian American and African American populations (and gangsters). The film looks to examine the conflict through the lens of the Soprano family, and though Tony would just be a boy, his parents and Uncle Junior could all be in play for roles.
Just don’t expect it to begin with Tony driving along to “Woke Up This Morning” or to offer any resolution on his ... well, whatever the hell happened to him. (C’mon, you’ve had years to catch up. Snape killed Dumbledore. Kevin Spacey is Keyser Soze. Bruce Willis was dead the whole time.)
As networks continue to plan reboots of beloved old content, and new streaming services plot ways to incentivize viewers with exclusive content, a movie from a familiar show might feel like a not-so-subtle cash cow. Yet this cash cow gets, and deserves, a chance. Because before the age of endless streaming ushered in unreliable protagonists, untimely deaths and nonlinear timelines, there was The Sopranos, setting the stage for it all.