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Michael Imperioli Tells How He Almost Lost His Role As Christopher Moltisanti

Michael Imperioli Tells How He Almost Lost His Role As Christopher Moltisanti

Michael Imperioli recalls in the Talking Sopranos podcast how he almost lost the role of Christopher Moltisanti in The Sopranos.

The Talking Sopranos Podcast is finally out, and it’s giving us some really interesting insight into the show we love. In its first episode, Michael Imperioli tells us how he almost lost his role as Christopher Moltisanti! Imagine the Sopranos without our favorite Chrissy. So, let’s take a look.

Michael Imperioli thought the creator didn’t like his audition

Michael Imperioli Tells How He Almost Lost His Role As Christopher Moltisanti on the Sopranos
David Chase | Flickr

As we all know, The Sopranos is the brainchild of its creator David Chase. He pretty much built the entire show from scratch, using his life’s experiences. Moreover, he took an active role in the show’s casting as well. And Michael Imperioli was one of the first people to audition as Chrissy. However, he recalls that Chase wasn’t so happy at his audition! He recalls in the Talking Sopranos podcast that:

David has, like, a poker face. You know, you can’t really read him. He doesn’t really give a lot away. So, I thought I was kinda boring him because I wasn’t really getting much of a reaction.

Michael Imperioli also explains how David continuously gave him directions, which isn’t something nice for an actor to hear. He was convinced he blew the role. He recalls:

I liked the character a lot, he’s a really good character. And finally, he said thanks a lot, and that was it. I walked out of the room convinced I blew it, convinced that I bored him to tears and I wasn’t gonna get it.

But, as it turns out, Michael Imperioli was wrong. And David Chase ended up hiring him for the role of Christopher Moltisanti. But, he screwed up again at the start of the show. This time, it was an accident!

An accident on the set of The Sopranos!

Michael Imperioli Tells How He Almost Lost His Role As Christopher Moltisanti

The other time Michael Imperioli thought he was going to get fired was when he shot the car scene with James Gandolfini. Michael reveals in the podcast that he didn’t have a driver’s license. And we’re talking about a 31-year-old here. What’s worse is that he didn’t mention it in front of anyone!

Then, Michael Imperioli is handed a Lexus on his first day of shooting the Pilot. He tries to act like he knew what he’s doing, but while reversing the car, he slams it in a tree! And James Gandolfini was sitting with him in the front passenger seat too. Imperioli recalls:

The airbags go off, Jim’s head goes back, and I’m thinking ‘I’m done’!

That’s some accident to have on the first day of your job. But, James Gandolfini started laughing instead of throwing a tantrum at Michael Imperioli. And that calmed Michael down a lot.

After the accident, Michael got a lot of stick from the prop woman. So much so, that she was willing to file a report against him! But, the showrunners were quite okay with it, because a few moments later they brought another Lexus on set. However, the final cut had that scene cut out. Therefore, Michael didn’t have to relive that moment again. But, just imagine for a moment how incomplete the Sopranos would have been without Michael Imperioli as Christopher Moltisanti? I guess we’ll never know, and we’re happy to not know!