Magazine article Variety

A Reluctant Celebrity

Magazine article Variety

A Reluctant Celebrity

Article excerpt

HBO boss Richard Plepler remembers thesp's loyalty, graciousness and intellect

I remember when David Chase brought the shows The Sopranos) to my office on VHS tapes. We watched the first few episodes together. I remember turning to him and saying, "Who is this guy? He's breathtaking." It was David who saw in Jim (Gandolfini) the capacity to create something magical, and he did.

He really was a reluctant celebrity. He was an incredibly humble and mensch-y guy, despite all the success. He was propelled so fast from relative anonymity to stardom, and throughout all of that he maintained his graciousness and his manners and the respect he showed everybody at our company. No matter what their position or their title, he treated everybody with great appreciation for their support of him and the show.

The Sopranos was a transcendent show, not only for HBO but for the medium. The credit goes to David and the cast led by Jim. …

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