Joseph Anthony Mantegna Jr., born in Chicago Illinois, is an American actor who has made over 200 Film and TV appearances. He is also a producer, writer, and director, and is probably best known for his role as Joey Zasa in the Francis Ford Coppola epic The Godfather: Part III (1990), in which he stars alongside Al Pacino and Andy Garcia.
Obtaining a degree in acting from the Goodman School of Drama, and taking to the stage early on in life, it is no surprise that Joe has maintained a strong relationship with the playwright -turned- screenwriter-director David Mamet. They have collaborated on several projects.
|Arlene Vrhel||(3 December 1975 - present) 2 children|
1969: Made his acting debut in a production of "Hair".
Formerly an actor with an Chicago's Organic Theatre Company.
1978: Debuted on Broadway in "Working". He also helped write "Bleacher Bums", an award-winning play. The Los Angeles production of "Bums" ran over five years.
His daughter, Mia, is autistic.
4/26/04: Received the lifetime achievement award at the Los Angeles Italian Film Festival.
Will Girardi, Mantegna's character on "Joan of Arcadia" (2003), was ranked #40 in TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time" [20 June 2004 issue].
As of May 15, 2005 has appeared on "The Simpsons" (1989) a record 16 times.
Father of Gia Mantegna.
His character on "The Simpsons" (1989), Fat Tony, has been the subject of two inside jokes. One of Fat Tony's first appearances was in the episode where Bart becomes his errand boy. At the end of the episode, the events are turned into a TV movie, in which, we are told, Joe Mantegna is playing Fat Tony. On a much later episode, after a mafia stand-off is placated by the appearance of Maggie Simpson, everyone breaks down crying. Fat Tony remarks, "I haven't cried like this since I paid to see The Godfather: Part III (1990).".
1984: Won the Tony Award as Best Actor (Featured Role - Play) for playing Richard ("Ricky") Roma in David Mamet's "Glengarry Glen Ross." In 2005, Liev Schreiber won his own Tony for playing the part originated by Mantegna in a revival of the play. The third major actor to play the part of Ricky Roma (in the film version of the play, Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)) was Al Pacino.
Along with Elizabeth Taylor and Mark Hamill, he is one of only three actors to play both themselves and a fictional character on "The Simpsons" (1989). He played himself in the Season Three episode, "The Simpsons: Bart the Murderer (#3.4)" (1991), and portrayed "Fat Tony" in that and fourteen other episodes of the series.
His wife Arlene owns Taste Chicago, a restaurant in Burbank, CA.
His character on the "The Simpsons" (1989) was originally intended to be a one-time guest appearance in the episode, "The Simpsons: Bart the Murderer (#3.4)" (1991), but it became a recurring role later on in the series' run. According to the Season 3 DVD commentary track, Mantegna liked the character and wanted to voice him again.
He attended Morton East High School in Cicero, IL, graduating in 1965.
Has been assured by "The Simpsons" (1989)' casting director that he will be the only person to voice the character Fat Tony - however, the character had a different actor for his short appearance in "A Fish Called Selma".
Received Honorary Doctorate in Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology on June 13, 2008. He was the commencement speaker.
Was considered for the role of Det.Joe Fontana on "Law & Order" (1990).
He was nominated for a 1974 Joseph Jefferson Award for Best Actor in a Principal Role for his performance in "The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit", at the Organic Theater Company in Chicago, Illinois.
He was nominated for a 1977 Joseph Jefferson Award for Actor in a Supporting Role for his performance in "Volpone", at the Organic Theater Company with Victory Gardens in Chicago, Illinois.
He was awarded the 1984 Joseph Jefferson Award for Actor in a Supporting Role in a Play for "Glengarry Glen Ross", at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, Illinois.
Good friend of Denis Leary.
Longtime personal friend of Roger Ebert.
Lives in Los Angeles and Burbank, California.
Until the age of 16, Joe had thought his birthday was November 10th. He found out it was really November 13th when he needed his birth certificate to get his drivers' license. His mother told him that because the cutoff date for starting school was the 10th, and she wanted to get back to work, she told the school (and Joe) that his birthday was November 10th.
[referring to his voice role as mob boss Fat Tony] Nothing interferes with my doing "The Simpsons" (1989)!
My father died just as I became an adult. It's a tough thing because you've kind of known this guy as a child and then, just at the point where you start to understand where he's coming from, he's gone. So now you look back and he almost becomes a mythical person to you.
 I'm just grateful to get the work I do.
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