Actor Paul Sorvino, star of ‘Goodfellas,’ and ‘Law & Order,’ dies at 83

Actor Paul Sorvino, star of ‘Goodfellas,’ and ‘Law & Order,’ dies at 83

Published July 26, 2022
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He spent 50 years in the entertainment business. He first started working as a copywriter in advertising, but left for theater — debuting on Broadway in 1964, and starting his film career in the 70s.

This morning, people are remembering actor Paul Sorvino. He died yesterday at 83 years old. Sorvino was featured in an array of movies and TV shows – Warren Beatty’s “Reds,” Baz Luhrmann’s “Romeo + Juliet,” and several episodes of “Law & Order.” But he was best known for his role as Paulie in the 1990 Martin Scorsese movie “Goodfellas.” You remember that one scene where they’re in prison making dinner? Sorvino’s character slices up garlic using a razor blade. NPR’s Andrew Limbong has this appreciation.

ANDREW LIMBONG, BYLINE: There’s a less flashy scene in “Goodfellas,” but it’s one that really shows off what Paul Sorvino could do. It’s after they’re in prison, and Sorvino’s Paulie is talking to Henry, his protege, played by the late Ray Liotta.

LIMBONG: And every time the shot goes from Liotta’s face back to Sorvino’s, it’s like his eyes get a little wider, his brow higher. His voice doesn’t get louder, but it gets scarier. And it builds until you can feel it when Sorvino slaps Liotta in the face.