‘The Godfather’ Star James Caan Dies at Age 82

James Caan, the American actor who rose to fame for his role as Sonny Corleone in “The Godfather,” died at the age of 82.

“It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Jimmy on the evening of July 6,” a family statement posted on Twitter on July 7 said.

“The family appreciates the outpouring of love and heartfelt condolences and asks that you continue to respect their privacy during this difficult time,” the statement further said.

Born in 1940 in the Bronx, New York City, Caan initially aimed for a career as an American football player, but he developed an interest in acting when he studied at Hofstra University, where he met Francis Ford Coppola, the director of “The Godfather.”

Caan rose to fame for his portrayal of the oldest son of mob boss Vito Corleone in “The Godfather” in 1972, which earned him his only Oscar nomination for best supporting actor.

A year before “The Godfather,” Caan earned an Emmy nomination for his breakout work in the TV movie, “Brian’s Song.”

Caan also earned four Golden Globe nominations throughout his career that spanned decades.

Caan briefly disappeared from the public eye in the early 1980s, which he described as “a pretty scary period,” brought by his sister’s death and his drug use.

Caan later returned to acting with memorable roles in successful films, such as “Misery” in 1990 and “Elf” in 2003.

In recent years, Caan became active on Twitter, often posting pictures of himself and friends from classic films, which served as a Hollywood history book.

One of Caan’s last major roles was a casino boss in the NBC hit “Las Vegas,” which run from 2003 to 2008.

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