Oscar-nominated ‘Godfather’ actor James Caan dies at 82

James Caan, an American actor best known for playing gangster Sonny Corleone in the acclaimed mafia film “The Godfather,” has passed away at age 82, his family announced on Thursday.

The actor passed away on Wednesday night, according to a statement on Caan’s official Twitter account. There was no mention of a cause of death or place.

In the statement, it was stated that “the family appreciates the outpouring of love and genuine sympathies and begs that you continue to respect their privacy during this difficult time.”

For his depiction of the irritable Corleone in the 1972 film “The Godfather,” Caan was nominated for an Academy Award for best-supporting actor. In the 1974 film “The Godfather: Part II,” he played the part again in flashback sequences. Four Golden Globe nominations and an Emmy were among the others.

His six-decade-long career featured a wide range of other parts in films including the comedy “Elf” and the psychological horror “Misery.” He co-starred with Ellen Burstyn in the romantic comedy “Queen Bees” last year.

German Jewish immigrants gave birth to James Edmund Caan on March 26, 1940, in the Bronx neighborhood of New York City. Caan, one of three siblings, made his television acting debut in 1961. He received considerable praise for his performance as Brian Piccolo, a real-life Chicago Bears football star who passed away from cancer at the age of 26, in the 1971 TV movie “Brian’s Song.” Caan received an Emmy nomination for the part.


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Billy Dee Williams, who co-starred with Caan in “Brian’s Song,” recently posted an updated picture of the two on Twitter.

“Friends and teammates to the very end. R.I.P. Jimmy “Williams posted a tweet with the heartbroken emoji.

In the 1996 comedy “Bulletproof,” in which Caan also participated, actor Adam Sandler claimed he “always wanted to be like him.”

“When I was with that man, I never once stopped laughing. His films were among the best “On Twitter, Sandler stated.

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