Taormina Film Festival Plans Homage To James Gandolfini

Updated with additional details: Rome’s Policlinic Umberto I hospital has released further information regarding the sudden death of James Gandolfini in Italy. The Sopranos star, who was in Rome ahead of a trip to Sicily for the Taormina Film Festival, was pronounced dead from cardiac arrest at 11PM local time on Wednesday after being taken by ambulance to the hospital. Emergency room chief, Dr. Claudio Modini, said Gandolfini arrived at the hospital at 10:40PM and was pronounced dead after resuscitation efforts in the ambulance and hospital failed, according to the Associated Press. He had been brought to the hospital from Rome’s Boscolo Exedra Hotel. An autopsy is to be performed, as required by law, Modini told the AP. In response to Gandolfini’s passing, the Taormina Festival is pulling together a tribute to him. He was due to receive the Taormina City Prize and to teach a masterclass on Saturday in the coastal town. Festival organizers Mario Sesti and Tiziana Rocca said today, “We are deeply saddened. We had heard from James Gandolfini a few hours before and he was very happy to receive this award and to be able to travel to Italy.” They are currently organizing a tribute to his “career and talent.” They noted, “He was the American actor that better than anyone else has been able to interpret the Italian-American with his personality full of contrasts, ambition, pain, humor. He was the face of the golden age of television, but also a memorable film actor.” The festival concludes Saturday night.

Related: R.I.P. James Gandolfini

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