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Dominic Chianese is an American actor, musician, and singer best known for his roles as “Johnny Ola” and “Corrado John Soprano Jr.” in the American crime dramas “The Godfather Part II” and “The Sopranos.” This seasoned performer made his debut in a “Off-Broadway” theater after more than 60 years of illustrious work, which includes parts in theater, movies, and television. With the play “Oliver!,” he made his Broadway debut. Subsequent performances in “Broadway,” “Off Broadway,” and regional theater helped him expand his theatrical career. He made his big-screen debut in the early 1970s with the American action comedy “Fuzz,” having had his television debut in 1964 with the drama series “East Side/West Side.” His breakthrough role was in the popular crime drama “The Godfather Part II,” starring Al Pacino and Robert De Niro, as “Johnny Ola.” In the next years, he appeared in a number of plays and movies alongside Al Pacino. He gained more notoriety with “The Sopranos,” for which he received two “Emmy” nominations. These seasoned actor’s other prominent roles may be seen in movies like “Unfaithful” and “All the President’s Men.” His roles in television programs like “Ryan’s Hope” and “Boardwalk Empire” are among his noteworthy TV performances. This seasoned performer has also established himself as a singer and musician. He produced two CDs, “Hits” and “Ungrateful Heart.” He portrays the title character in the 2019 movie “Umberto D.”

Early Childhood & Life

The octogenarian with a variety of talents was created on February 24, 1931, in the Bronx, New York, USA. After his grandpa immigrated to the US from Naples, Italy, in 1904, his family made their home in the Bronx.

Dominic, the son of a bricklayer, went to the prestigious “Bronx High School of Science.” He began working on building projects with his father after graduating from high school, all the while continuing his education at a night school. He received his BA in speech and theater studies from “Brooklyn College” in 1961 after completing his studies there.

Career of Dominic Chianese

He began his acting career on stage. He became familiar with “Off-Broadway” shows and the traveling repertory theater company “American Savoyards” in 1952, which cleared the way for his participation in the national tours of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado and Patience.”

Later, he received his first formal training in acting from renowned American actor, director, and acting teacher Walt Witcover at the HB Studio in Manhattan. He eventually became passionate about musical theater and drama.

His television debut occurred in the 1964 episode of the renowned American drama series “East Side/West Side,” when he played the character “Charley” in the episode “The Street.” George C. Scott suggested him for the position.

He made his Broadway debut in 1965 with the 64-performance run of the English musical “Oliver!” at the Martin Beck Theatre, which was directed by Peter Coe. He acted as “Mr. Sowerberry,” and “Oliver” was Victor Stiles.

He appeared in numerous other “Broadway,” “Off Broadway,” and local theater plays throughout the ensuing years. The venues included, among others, the “Yale Repertory Theatre,” the “Long Wharf Theatre,” and the “New York Shakespeare Festival.” In order to make ends meet, he frequently sang and played the rhythm guitar in bars and restaurants.

He worked as a recreational worker in a rehabilitation facility for the “Drug Commission of New York State” for a time and taught guitar to women serving prison sentences for drug-related offenses. He received the “Ellis Island Medal of Honor” in 2010 for his humanitarian work.

Soon after, Francis Ford Coppola, who produced and directed the American crime drama “The Godfather Part II,” gave him one of the most recognizable roles of his career: “Johnny Ola.” In addition to being a big commercial success, the Oscar-winning movie, which starred Al Pacino and Robert De Niro and was released in December 1974, has established itself as one of the best works of American cinema, particularly in the gangster genre.

He first gained notoriety for his performance in “The Godfather Part II,” which paved the way for subsequent illustrious parts in movies and television shows of various genres. This allowed him to confidently and eloquently showcase his acting talent and range.

In two more critically and financially successful movies, “Dog Day Afternoon” (1975) and “…And Justice For All,” he appeared alongside pal Al Pacino (1979). Dominic appeared in the 1996 documentary “Looking for Richard,” which served as Al Pacino’s directorial debut. He also appeared with Al Pacino in a number of plays.

He portrayed “Alexei Vartova” in 40 episodes of the well-known American soap opera “Ryan’s Hope,” which was first broadcast on “ABC” for 13 years, beginning in July 1975. This occurred in the year 1981.
In the American crime-drama TV series “The Sopranos,” he played the role of “Corrado John Soprano Jr.,” a senior Mafia member of the “DiMeo” crime family who was smart, traditional, and challenging to handle. This role catapulted him to new heights of celebrity.

He received a nomination for the “Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series” in 2000 and 2001 for his great performance in “The Sopranos” during all six of its seasons that were broadcast on “HBO” from January 10, 1999, to June 10, 2007. In the “The Sopranos” Season 3 finale, titled “Army of One,” he also sang Salvatore Cardillo’s 1911 Neapolitan classic “Core ‘ngrato.”

He has established a reputation for himself as a talented musician and tenor in addition to acting. He published the CD “Hits” in 2000, which had a variety of his own songs in both American and Italian. In 2003, “AOL Music” issued his second CD, “Ungrateful Heart,” which has 16 traditional Neapolitan songs.

He appeared in a number of other well-known American movies and TV shows, demonstrating the diversity of his performance. These include movies like the 1990 crime drama “Q&A,” the 2011 family comedy “Mr. Popper’s Penguins,” and TV shows like “Damages” (2010) and “Boardwalk Empire” (2011–2013). They also included TV movies like “Gotti” (1996) and “Crimes of Fashion” (2004).
He will play the lead in his upcoming movie, “Umberto D.,” which will hit theaters in 2019.

Individual Life of Dominic Chianese

He wed Merle Molofsky in 1961, and the two of them had three kids. Later, the marriage ended in divorce. Three episodes of the sixth season of “The Sopranos” also featured his actor son Dominic Chianese Jr.
He tied the knot with Jane Pittson on June 8, 2003.

Dominic Chianese’s Net Worth

Dominic Chianese is an Italian-American musician, actor, and vocalist with a $10 million fortune. The role of Corrado “Junior” Soprano that Chianese played in the critically acclaimed HBO drama “The Sopranos” (1999-2007) garnered him two Primetime Emmy nominations. Chianese is most known for this role. In 1974’s “The Godfather Part II,” he played Johnny Ola, and on HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, he played Leander Cephas Whitlock (2011–2013).