‘The Sopranos’ Star James Gandolfini Once Stopped Filming Because He Loved Ice Cream So Much

by Megan Molseed

The hit HBO series The Sopranos has left quite an impressive legacy.

Some of the most iconic scenes on television have come from the ground-breaking cable series.

Who remembers the moment Sal Bonpensiero got whacked while on Tony Soprano’s boat? Or Adriana’s final storylines on the award-winning series? Memorable moments for sure.

But, who remembers the moment in the series that drove Tony Soprano actor James Gandolfini to take a break from filming? What was this scene? Well, it was the moment that Gandolfini ate way too much ice cream while filming.

During a recent interview, Gandolfini’s costar, Edie Falco – who played the wife of Tony Soprano on the popular series – recalls a moment when scene after scene, Gandolfini couldn’t stick with “stage bites.”

And, Falco says, this resulted in a sort of comedic behind the scene moment on The Soprano’s set.

“We learned tricks so it looked like we were eating,” The Soprano’s star remembers.

“But we weren’t,” Falco continues. “Jim ate in every frigging take, and he ate between takes.”

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Edie Falco, who was a vegetarian at the time of shooting this episode, says that the meal the family was to eat on screen wasn’t something she would regularly eat anyway.

Because of this, she was attacking most of her plate using the on-screen acting tricks making it appear as if she was eating when the camera was on her.

But, the actress says, Gandolfini was going for a more realistic approach that day. According to Falco, she even began to notice The Soprano’s star begin to lose focus on his role during the scenes that required the actor to eat one particular food: ice cream.

“There was one scene we were shooting, where he was eating a bowl of ice cream,” Edie Falco recalls.

“And in every take, he ate and would then re-fill the bowl,” the actress adds.

“And then at one point, I realized he’s not really listening to me,” Falco quips. “He had gone into a sugar coma!”

Of course, meal scenes can be somewhat challenging for actors. If they do decide to skip the on-screen tricks and eat the food that can mean several hours of non-stop eating as most shows use multiple takes and a variety of angles in each shoot.

“We had to stop and shoot the rest of the scene another day,” Falco recalls of the result of James Gandolfini’s fondness of ice cream on the set.

“He was like a five-year-old: ‘The ice-cream is good, I like it!’” the actress jokes. “I was like, ‘You gotta stop, you’re gonna get sick!’”