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Tag: Legacy (1-4 of 4)

James Gandolfini: A subtle, versatile star who left TV in better shape than he found it

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It is a fate common to great actors whose most enduring success comes on television that the highest praise they receive is actually a trap concealed inside a compliment. Referring to someone’s “iconic role” or “indelible performance” can be a way of saying that a performer could really do only one thing, and his legacy is that he did it perfectly. With the sudden death of James Gandolfini at the horribly young age of 51, all of us who loved and admired his work are, naturally, going to spend a lot of time thinking about The Sopranos, 86 hours of television that was not simply the perfect marriage of actor and role, but the exceedingly rare instance of an actor expanding the possibilities of the medium by the sheer force of his talent, daring, and commitment.

There were many great TV performances before HBO chose Gandolfini over Michael Rispoli and Steven Van Zandt, the other contenders to play New Jersey waste management consultant Tony Soprano, but when viewers saw what Gandolfini was doing with the part that David Chase had given him, it was, in a way, news: The fact that television could accommodate a character like Tony, and a performance like Gandolfini’s made the medium feel bigger, less constrained, more dangerous and exciting. And it wasn’t an illusion:  James Gandolfini left television in better shape than it was in when he found it.

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Steve Sabol, the pioneer behind NFL Films, dies at age 69

Steve Sabol, who revolutionized the way sports are covered in America as the president of NFL Films, died on Tuesday from brain cancer, according to NFL.com. He was 69.

In the early ’60s, Sabol joined his father Ed Sabol in creating a new style of looking at the sport of football — it was intimate, passionate, and brought fans used to watching from the stands, or their living-room La-Z-Boys, closer to the field than they had ever been. It was one thing to watch a game on TV on Sunday, it was quite another to relive it the following week thanks to the Sabols, who brought an almost-mythic level of drama to the gladiatorial combat on the gridiron. Sabol worked as a cameraman, editor, writer, director, and producer for NFL Films, sharing a passion for the game that developed while playing football at Colorado College.

Over the next decade, the Sabols’ NFL Films segments became an institution. They were instantly recognizable to fans, not only for their on-the-field view of the plays and the players (who they often put tiny microphones on), but also for the stentorian narration of John Facenda — a man whose voice seemed to rumble down from the fog-shrouded peak of Mt. Olympus. READ FULL STORY

CBS News to air special program dedicated to Mike Wallace

CBS News announced that it will air a special program next Sunday, April 15 dedicated to 60 Minutes correspondent Mike Wallace, who passed away on Saturday, April 7, at the age of 93.

“It is with tremendous sadness that we mark the passing of Mike Wallace. His extraordinary contribution as a broadcaster is immeasurable and he has been a force within the television industry throughout its existence. His loss will be felt by all of us at CBS,” Leslie Moonves, president and CEO, CBS Corporation, says in the statement.

Read the entire statement from CBS News below: READ FULL STORY

Anderson Cooper and other news personalities react to the death of Mike Wallace

News personalities, including Anderson Cooper and Larry King, politicians, and others expressed their condolences via Twitter and official statements following the death of legendary 60 Minutes interviewer, Mike Wallace, who passed away on Saturday, April 7, at the age of 93.

Ann Curry: Tough questions are being asked in Heaven today. RIP Mike Wallace

Anderson Cooper: Just heard of the death of Mike Wallace. A true original. What an amazing career and remarkable man.

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