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Tuesday, 16 July, 2002, 11:11 GMT 12:11 UK
Sopranos creator to bow out
The Sopranos
The series shows a different side to the mafia
Sopranos creator David Chase has confirmed that the fifth series of the hit mafia drama will be his last.

Following on the heels of his announcement the show's stars James Gandolfini and Lorraine Bracco said they could not see themselves carrying on without Chase.

Chase told the Television Critics Association in Los Angeles that the fifth series script he was working on at present would be his final.

David Chase
David Chase has deal which gives him profits from DVD sales
But he also pointed out that US TV network HBO owned the rights to the show, so there was a possibility it could continue without him.

"I wouldn't say it's irrevocable," said Chase. "If they decide to go on, from a business standpoint, they could."

But Gandolfini, who plays neurotic mafia boss Tony Soprano, showed his support for the creator of his character.

"I started with him, I'd like to finish with him," he said.

Profits

Edie Falco, who plays his wife, Carmela, agreed with the sentiment that she would probably quit at the same time as Chase.

There had been suggestions the fourth series would spell the end of the hit drama.

But Chase has signed a new deal which gives him part of the profits for future video and DVD sales, which are estimated to be worth between $15m (10.6m) and $20m (14.2m).

E4 is due to screen the fourth series of The Sopranos in the UK in October.

The cast celebrate another award
The Sopranos has won numerous awards
Chase told the critics that the relationship between husband and wife Tony and Carmela would be at the centre of the narrative.

The first year was about Tony and his mother, the second about him and his sister and the third revolved around his relationship with his two children.

The writer also said the atrocities of 11 September would be dealt with in the coming season.

The Sopranos won three awards at the 2001 Emmys for best-written drama series, and best actor and actress, for the performances of Gandolfini and Falco.

See also:

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