Family, friends and Hollywood colleagues of “Goodfellas” star Paul Sorvino will gather at the Hollywood Museum Wednesday evening for a star-studded celebration of the life of the late character actor, who died July 25 at age 83.
“This is a very special Celebration of Life for my husband Paul — family, friends and many from the entertainment industry will come to celebrate a life well lived,” Sorvino’s widow, the actor and producer Dee Dee Sorvino, said in a statement released by her husband’s publicist.
“The Hollywood Museum was Paul’s happy place. Every time we attended an event there, he smiled and felt at home and relaxed. We could not have selected a better place to have Paul’s friends and family come to celebrate his life and career.”
Sorvino died of natural causes in Jacksonville, Florida, but “had dealt with health issues over the past few years,” publicist Roger Neal said at the time of Sorvino’s death.
Dee Dee Sorvino announced the death on Facebook, writing, “I am completely devastated. The love of my life & the most wonderful man who has ever lived is gone. I am heartbroken.”
Over a long career, Sorvino was best known for his role as mob boss Paul Cicero in Martin Scorsese’s 1990 “Goodfellas” — carving an imposing figure on the screen as he guided the mob upbringing of star Ray Liotta.
Wednesday’s remembrance is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m., with Scorsese expected to be among the celebrities joining via video, according to Neal.
Also expected to video into the gathering are actors Chazz Palminteri, Steve Schirripa, Jon Voight, Chris Noth, Chris Tucker and Renee Taylor; TV personalities Ben Mankiewicz and Piers Morgan; and model Carol Alt.
In-person attendees are expected to include actors Joe Mantegna, Nick Vallelonga, Sofia Milos, Kira Reed Lorsch, David A. R. White, Lainie Kazan, Jeff Garlin, Erin Murphy, Leslie Zemeckis, Ruta Lee, Kate Linder and Rex Smith, according to Neal.
Neal told City News Service that Sorvino’s cremated remains will be at the museum before he is interred at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
Sorvino, a native of Brooklyn, New York, made his film debut in Carl Reiner’s “Where’s Poppa?” in 1970 and went on to appear in dozens of films over the years, including “A Touch of Class,” “Oh, God!,” “The Brink’s Job,” “Reds,” “That Championship Season,” “Dick Tracy” and “Nixon.”
He is also well known to TV fans for his work as Sgt. Phil Cerreta on “Law & Order.”
Film buffs will also recall one of Sorvino’s most touching moments, when he sat in the audience during the 1996 Academy Awards ceremony and wept as he watched his daughter, Mira Sorvino, win the supporting-actress prize for her work in “Mighty Aphrodite.”
His daughter praised him while on stage that night, saying he “taught me everything I know about acting.”
“My father the great Paul Sorvino has passed,” Mira Sorvino wrote on Twitter last month. “My heart is rent asunder — a life of love and joy and wisdom with him is over. He was the most wonderful father. I love him so much. I’m sending you love in the stars Dad as you ascend.”
Paul Sorvino was married three times and had three adult children — Mira, Amanda and Michael, along with five grandchildren.