The Sopranos remains one of the most well regarded TV series of all-time, even if people had some issues with the ambiguous ending. So it should be little surprise that there’s a good bit of excitement surrounding a prequel to the classic HBO series coming out this fall called The Many Saints of Newark.
David Chase, who created The Sopranos, returned to the world he created and penned the screenplay with Lawrence Konner, another veteran of the original series. Keeping things in the family even further, Alan Taylor directed nine episodes of The Sopranos throughout its run and is returning for The Many Saints of Newark.
Cue the classic theme song and let’s go deeper into what we know about The Many Saints of Newark.
What is the plot of ‘The Many Saints of Newark’?
The official synopsis for The Many Saints of Newark, per Warner Bros., is:
“The film is set in the explosive 1960s in the era of the Newark riots, when African-American and Italian communities are often at each other’s throats. But among the gangsters within each group, the dangerous rivalry becomes especially lethal.”
This time period was the formative years of a young Tony Soprano, turning him into the man we got to know in The Sopranos. However, that will just be a part of the story, as Tony’s uncle Richard “Dickie” Moltisanti looks to be the central figure of the film as well.
Who is in the ‘The Many Saints of Newark’ cast?
It’s impossible to think of The Sopranos and not think of the late, great James Gandolfini’s portrayal of Tony Soprano. As luck would have it, the role will stay within the Gandolfini family as the actor’s son Michael Gandolfini is tapped to reprise the role. It’s far from nepotism or stunt casting, though; the younger Gandolfini has credits that include HBO’s The Deuce and the film Cherry.
But just like The Sopranos featured an ensemble of great characters and actors, The Many Saints of Newark looks to follow the same formula. Leading the way is Alessandro Nivola (American Hustle, Disobedience) is tapped to play Dickie Moltisanti. Here is the rest of the cast:
- Vera Farmiga - Livia Soprano
- Leslie Odom Jr. - Harold McBrayer
- Jon Bernthal - Johnny Boy Soprano
- Billy Magnussen - Paulie ‘Walnuts’ Gualtieri
- Ray Liotta - Aldo ‘Hollywood Dick’ Moltisanti
- Corey Stoll - Junior Soprano
- John Magaro - Silvio Dante
- Daryl Edwards - Julius
- Gabriella Piazza - Joanne Moltisanti
- Chase Vacnin - Jackie April
- Lesli Margherita - Iris Balducci
- Alexandra Intrator - Janice Soprano
- Samson Moeakiola - Salvatore “Big Pussy” Bonpensiero
- Michela De Rossi - Giuseppina Bruno
Who is director Alan Taylor?
Alan Taylor has crafted some of the best TV episodes of the 21st century. His past credits include episodes of Oz, The West Wing, Sex and the City, Deadwood, Mad Men and Game of Thrones. His film credits, meanwhile, include Thor: The Dark World and Terminator Genisys.
Taylor is familiar with the world of The Sopranos, having directed nine episodes across the series run, including three each in the final two seasons.
When is the ‘The Many Saints of Newark’ release date?
The Many Saints of Newark will premiere on Oct. 1 in the U.S., while U.K. moviegoers will actually get it a little bit earlier on Sept. 22.
In addition to playing in theaters, The Many Saints of Newark, as a 2021 Warner Bros. film, is also getting a hybrid release on Oct. 1, streaming on HBO Max. As has been the case with all 2021 Warner Bros. titles, the films will stream at no additional cost for HBO Max subscribers (those with the $14.99 plan) for the first month of the film’s release.
Is there a ‘The Many Saints of Newark’ trailer?
Warner Bros. has released a couple of trailers for The Many Saints of Newark thus far. The first trailer focuses heavily on the young Tony Soprano and his relationship with his uncle Dickie. The second, more recent trailer, focuses more on Dickie and teases some of the action that lies in store. Check out the latest trailer below.
Are there 'The Many Saints of Newark' reviews?
Reviews have started to come in for The Many Saints of Newark, and the opening word on the film is generally positive. What to Watch's sister site Cinemablend described the film as a gripping return to Jersey, though recognizes that it is most enjoyable if you are already familiar with The Sopranos.
Following the first batch of reviews, The Many Saints of Newark has a 73% score on Rotten Tomatoes, and it so far has scored a 66 on Metacritic.
What to Watch reviewer Emma Fraser has given her thoughts on the film, where she gives credit to multiple strong performances and direction from Alan Taylor, but despite flashes of brilliance can't quite clear the high bar of its predecessor.
How to watch ‘The Many Saints of Newark’
With a hybrid release, there are multiple ways to watch The Many Saints of Newark when it is released.
The first is simply heading to your local theater. Be sure to check your local theater listings to see where and when it is playing, as well as being aware of your local health guidelines so that you and your fellow theatergoers can enjoy a safe screening. You may also want to look into movie theater subscription deals, which are great to take some of the hit out of your wallet if you’re often heading to the movie theaters each month.
The other option is to watch it from your home, for which you need an HBO Max subscription. You must make sure that it is the $14.99 version of HBO Max, as the $9.99 plan does not offer streams of Warner Bros. movies during their first run. There is no additional cost to watch The Many Saints of Newark beyond the monthly subscription.
Again, the streaming of The Many Saints of Newark will only be available for its first month of release (conveniently in this case essentially just the month of October), though it will make its way back to HBO Max at a later, as yet unspecified, date.
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Michael Balderston is a DC-based entertainment and assistant managing editor for What to Watch, who has previously written about the TV and movies with TV Technology, Awards Circuit and regional publications. Spending most of his time watching new movies at the theater or classics on TCM, some of Michael's favorite movies include Casablanca, Moulin Rouge!, Silence of the Lambs, Children of Men, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest and Star Wars. On the TV side he enjoys Only Murders in the Building, Yellowstone, The Boys, Game of Thrones and is always up for a Seinfeld rerun. Follow on Letterboxd.