Michael Imperioli is an actor with great diversity, and yet we know him best as Christopher Moltisanti on The Sopranos--a no-good junkie, alcoholic, girlfriend-slapping young mafia soldier who made his boss Tony Soprano seem as sensitive and polite as Mr. Rogers! In Spike Lee's new film Oldboy, he plays the "true blue" old friend and bar owner who's not afraid to stick his neck out for a friend (played by Josh Brolin) who has disappeared for 20 years...and who happens to be a criminal on the lam for killing his wife. (Well, or so we are led to believe--I can't give away any of the spoilers for this film, which is a remake of the 2002 avant garde Korean classic of the same name but with twists and turns added!)
|Imperioli at Oldboy Press Day, NYC|
I attended the press day for Oldboy in New York City and had to ask Imperioli how he got involved in this project in the first place? "I got a phone call from Spike Lee and he said he was looking forward to working with me again. And I had no idea what he was talking about. I have worked with him six times but was surprised to hear from him directly. We hadn't spoken for a year." He says with a chuckle, "Apparently, my agent forgot to tell me that I had gotten this role so I just had to act kind of cool and say 'when do we start'!" The actor admits that he was attracted to the movie "because it's weird and dark and out-of-character for Spike Lee--the script was really strange and twisted and exciting!"
|Oldboy Movie Poster|
|Imperioli in Oldboy|
Imperioli is starting on the Martin Scorcese-produced film The Wannabe as we go to press and will be performing with La Dolce Vita in LA in December. He says he stays grounded by “cooking for his family a lot.” He is the parent of two teenagers and a 24 year old, believe it or not! Oldboy opens on November 27th. For more info, check out the official site, www.oldboyfilm.com.
PHOTO CREDITS: Michael Imperioli shot at Conrad Hotel by Anne Raso,; all others courtesy FilmDistrict