A ‘Sopranos’ prequel film from series creator David Chase is in the works

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Courtesy of HBO

More than 10 years after The Sopranos ended its six-season run, the drama remains one of HBO’s most popular series of all time — so much so, in fact, that a prequel movie is now in the works. The project’s working title is The Many Saints of Newark.

Sopranos creator David Chase teamed up with one of the show’s former writers, Lawrence Konner, to pen the script, and New Line snapped it up, Deadline reports. Together, the two Sopranos vets have written a story that takes place in Newark, New Jersey, during the 1960s. We will see the era’s racial tension, which simmered before ultimately erupting into a series of destructive and deadly riots.

News of the prequel isn’t entirely surprising. Chase told Entertainment Weekly in June that he didn’t want to remake or revive the series, but revealed he wasn’t opposed to revisiting it in some capacity. Specifically, he said he “could conceive of maybe a prequel of The Sopranos.”

Evidently, Chase has done so. With the project gaining traction, the Sopranos creator is set to produce the film, in addition to co-writing it. He will also have a hand in bringing a director on board, Deadline reports.

At this point, there have been no casting announcements, but we do expect to see familiar characters in the movie. Deadline’s sources say the story involves younger versions of Tony Soprano’s parents, Giovanni (aka Johnny Boy) and Livia, who were played by Joseph Siravo and Nancy Marchand in the HBO series. Additionally, Tony’s uncle Corrado Soprano (aka Junior) may also be back; he was portrayed by Dominic Chianese.

Given the lasting impact and enduring popularity of The Sopranos, hopes for the prequel seem to be high at New Line and its parent company, Warner Bros. Pictures Group.

“David is a masterful storyteller and we, along with our colleagues at HBO, are thrilled that he has decided to revisit, and enlarge, the Soprano universe in a feature film,” Toby Emmerich, chairman of Warner Bros. Pictures Group, said in a statement.

We’re still a long way from being able to see The Many Saints of Newark in theaters, but we’re optimistic about the project and how it will develop.