Frank Vincent Dead at 78 From Heart Surgery Complications

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The actor "died peacefully on Wednesday, a statement from his family said", according to The Associated Press.

According to TMZ, Vincent died during heart surgery after experiencing complications. He had suffered a heart attack a week earlier.

The Sopranos star Frank Vincent has been cremated and will be displayed at his upcoming memorial service.

Born in MA but raised in New Jersey, Vincent originally wanted to have a career in music but switched to acting when he got a role in a low-budget mob movie called The Death Collector alongside another up-and-coming actor named Joe Pesci. Those films will be hard-pressed to find replacements who can fill Vincent's shoes.

"Our family will never forget the Leotardo legacy", HBO, which was home to "The Sopranos" for its six seasons, tweeted.

Vincent started acting in the mid-1970s and was a longtime friend of frequent Scorsese collaborator Joe Pesci. They collaborated on a number of other projects as well, including "The Deli" and "Animal Room".

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He was also featured on HBO's The Sopranos as the arch-nemesis to John Gandolfini's Tony Soprano.

Martin Scorsese writes a tribute for Frank Vincent.

Vincent was also known for his roles in Raging Bull, Casino and Do the Right Thing.

Frank was one of the most recognizable character actors - in the biz for 41 years - known for his tough guy roles. especially in mafia movies. Whether it was Salvy Batts spending too much time with Joey LaMotta's sister-in-law in "Raging Bull" or Billy Batts pestering Tommy DeVito in "GoodFellas" about his history as a shoeshine boy, Vincent always had a knack for playing the man who would set off Pesci's characters, and the two actors had some phenomenal scenes together.

Vincent went on to appear in dozens of feature films and TV shows.

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