Paul Herman Dies: ‘The Sopranos’, ‘Goodfellas’ Actor Was 76

Paul Herman dead; Beansie on Sopranos
Paul Herman Instagram

Paul Herman, a Brooklyn-born actor who appeared in such classic mob movies as Goodfellas, Once Upon a Time in America and The Irishman but is probably best known for his portrayal of club owner Peter “Beansie” Gaeta in The Sopranos, died Tuesday. He was 76.

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His death was announced on Instagram by Sopranos co-star Michael Imperioli. A cause of death was not disclosed.

“Our friend and colleague Paul Herman has passed away,” Imperioli wrote. “Paulie was just a great dude. A first class storyteller and raconteur and one hell of an actor. Goodfellas, Once Upon a Time in America, The Irishman and of course The Sopranos are some highlights. Paulie lived around the corner from me the last few years and i am glad we got to spend some time together before he left us. I’ll miss him. Lots of love to his family, friends and our community of actors and filmmakers.”

Herman began his movie career in 1982’s Dear Mr. Wonderful starring Joe Pesci, following that up with roles in Once Upon a Time in America, The Pope of Greenwich Village, The Cotton Club, The Purple Rose of Cairo, The Last Temptation of Christ, The Color of Money, Radio Days, Billy Bathgate, Bullets Over Broadway, Cop Land, Goodfellas, Casino and Silver Linings Playbook as well as TV shows including Miami Vice, Spencer For Hire and The Equalizer.

“I am very sad about the passing of Paul Herman,” Robert De Niro said in a statement. “He was a wonderful actor as well as a dear friend. He will be missed by all who knew and loved him, and by the profession he so proudly served through the quality of his work. Rest in Peace, Paul.”

Herman’s most memorable character came in 2000 with his first Sopranos appearance in the recurring role of Beansie Gaeta, a former drug dealer and one-time friend and associate of DiMeo crime family capo Richie Aprile (David Proval). In one particularly indelible Sopranos moment, Aprile, newly out of prison, attacks his former friend Beansie with a pot of hot coffee before running him over with a car, leaving Beansie paraplegic.

After the Sopranos, Herman recurred on the HBO series Entourage from 2004-10 as Marvin, the accountant of main character Vince Chase (Adrian Grenier).

Friends and co-stars took to social media today to remember Herman.

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