James Joseph Gandolfini, Jr. was an American actor and producer.
Gandolfini was born in Westwood, New Jersey. His mother, Santa , was a high school lunch lady of Italian ancestry who was born in the United States and raised in Naples. His father, James Joseph Gandolfini, Sr., was a native of Borgo Val di Taro who worked as a bricklayer and cement mason and later the head janitor at Paramus Catholic High School in New Jersey. James Sr. earned a Purple Heart in World War II. Gandolfinis parents were devout Roman Catholics and spoke Italian at home. Due to the influence of his parents, he developed a strong sense of Italian American identity and visited Italy regularly. He had two sisters.