Actor James Gandolfini dies in Italy at age 51

This undated publicity photo, released by HBO, shows actor James Gandolfini in his role as Tony Soprano, head of the New Jersey crime family portrayed in HBO's "The Sopranos." HBO and the managers for Gandolfini say the actor died today in Italy. He was 51.
This undated publicity photo, released by HBO, shows actor James Gandolfini in his role as Tony Soprano, head of the New Jersey crime family portrayed in HBO's "The Sopranos." HBO and the managers for Gandolfini say the actor died today in Italy. He was 51. Barry Wetcher, HBO/AP Photo

Los Angeles — HBO and James Gandolfini's managers said the actor famous for his role in "The Sopranos" died in Italy.

The cable channel, and managers Mark Armstrong and Nancy Sanders, said the 51-year-old Gandolfini died Wednesday while on holiday in Rome.

In a statement, HBO called the actor a great talent and a gentle and loving person.

Gandolfini played conflicted mob boss Tony Soprano in the groundbreaking HBO series that aired from 1999 to 2007.

His film credits included "Zero Dark Thirty" and "Killing Them Softly," and he appeared in the Broadway production "God of Carnage."

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