Pot Calls Kettle Black, Goes to Prison

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There was a funny little nugget in Jonathan Miller’s NY Times story about shooting the final Sopranos scenes on location in Jersey. This tidbit was buried in parenthesis and had the misfortune of falling smack in the middle of a jump from page 1 of the Metro section to page 5. So I’ll give it the spotlight it deserves:

But since it first went on the air in 1999, “The Sopranos” has had a complicated relationship with the Garden State. While many residents feel a sense of pride in the series, others, especially politicians, have complained that it plays to ugly stereotypes about Italians as thuggish criminals.

In 2000, James W. Treffinger, who was then the Essex County executive, banned the series from shooting there, saying it “stereotypes an ethnic group.” (Mr. Treffinger was later sentenced to 13 months in prison after being convicted of corruption.)

Speaking of The Sopranos, it seems there's been precious little buzz about the final season, which starts in just 16 days (though I suspect that will change in a matter of days). Minus an ad in the new Sports Illustrated yesterday, the only marketing I've seen for the show has been old posters from its A&E debut.

By Michael Malone

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