James Gandolfini Dead at 51

James Gandolfini died Wednesday while on vacation in Italy. He was 51.

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Uzi Baruch,

James Gandolfini
James Gandolfini

James Gandolfini, best known for his role as an anxiety-ridden mob boss on HBO's "The Sopranos," died Wednesday while on vacation in Italy. He was 51.

The exact cause of James Gandolfinise's death remains unknown, but his managers said it was possibly a heart attack.

"It is with immense sorrow that we report our client passed away today while on holiday in Rome, Italy," managers Mark Armstrong and Nancy Sanders said in a joint statement. "Our hearts are shattered and we will miss him deeply. He and his family were part of our family for many years and we are all grieving."

Gandolfini won three Emmys for his portrayal of the conflicted New Jersey mobster, a groundbreaking role in television that paved the way for the "anti-hero" in other dramas. "The Sopranos" aired from 1999 to 2007, ushering HBO into popularity and establishing it as a respected competitor among other TV networks.

He is survived by his wife Deborah, their baby daughter Lilliana, and his son Michael from a previous marriage.