'The Sopranos' Finally Return to TV

This is a partial transcript of "The Big Story With John Gibson," March 10, 2006, that has been edited for clarity.

JOHN GIBSON, HOST: In just two days, our favorite family returns to Sunday nights after a nearly two-year hiatus. Some of them are in a better place. Some of them are in the big house.

So what can we expect from the six and supposedly final season of "The Sopranos"? Joining us now is Vincent Curatola, aka New York boss Johnny Sack.

So you were telling me just a minute ago, this Sunday day night is a mindblower.

VINCENT CURATOLA, JOHNNY SACK, "THE SOPRANOS": It's powerful. It's probably a 180 from what you might expect and it's — I mean it took me back in my seat and, of course, I read the script a long time ago.

GIBSON: Right.

CURATOLA: Once you see it, it's amazing. It really is.

GIBSON: I was blown off the couch by the episode where Ralphy was murdered.


GIBSON: This is bigger? More surprising?

CURATOLA: I think it's a lot more interesting. Yes, I can't tell you the result of it, of course, because they would kill me.

GIBSON: Yes, of course.

CURATOLA: In real life. I think you are going to — don't get up and go to the bathroom. If you are thirsty bring something in ahead of time. Which I'm sure you'll probably stick to the screen anyway.

GIBSON: There are 12 episodes in the season, right?

CURATOLA: Correct.

GIBSON: Are there more episodes beyond that?

CURATOLA: Eight bonus episodes, which I belief would come out early 2007.

GIBSON: You don't want this to end, do you?

CURATOLA: The camaraderie on the set amongst the cast members is incredible. It's a day-to-day thing. We are on the phone with each other constantly. We travel together.

As far as the work itself, the only thing I could say is that David's genius is as such that, if it needs to end, there is a reason for it to end. It's bittersweet, yes, but it's something we can all put in our minds and hearts the rest of our careers. It's better to have done it than never to have done it.

GIBSON: You are a nice guy.


GIBSON: Johnny Sack is not. He is a bad, bad guy.

CURATOLA: He is a boss.

GIBSON: He is a boss. He is mean.

CURATOLA: You know what it is? No, I think he is very sensitive to people, except for the fact that he...

GIBSON: His feelings get hurt?

CURATOLA: Yes, he is obsessive compulsive. He wants to see everything done correctly so that the system will always work. And if the system always works, then we always prosper. And if we always prosper, we take care of our families in generations to come.

So you have to be very specific and hard-lined about your orders being followed out.

GIBSON: You, like me, you've lived in this country a long time. You've watched TV a long time. You have seen a lot of shows. Where does "The Sopranos" fit in?

CURATOLA: I put it up there with, one of my favorites was "St. Elsewhere," "Hill Street Blues." My God, you can go to "Mission: Impossible" with the brilliance of the writing, you know. I mean, I'm 52 years old so I grew up on this stuff. I loved it. And we are right up there. We are in the top five, top six as far as I'm concerned because the writing is just so incredible.

GIBSON: What's it done for your career?

CURATOLA: Oh, my God, I used to polish my car in my driveway and I haven't done that for years because it will take me ten hours.

GIBSON: Vincent Curatola, aka Johnny Sack on "The Sopranos." This Sunday night. Don't miss it.

Vincent, thanks a lot.

CURATOLA: Thank you, John.

GIBSON: I'm not going to miss "The Sopranos" on Sunday night. I'm not. I haven't missed any so far.

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