The prolific character actor Paul Sorvino, who, according to Memory Alpha, guest starred as the character Nikolai Rozhenko in the “Star Trek: The Next Generation” seventh-season episode “Homeward,” has died at the age of 83. Sorvino’s publicist Roger Neal confirmed the actor’s death, according to The Hollywood Reporter, stating that he died on the morning of July 25, 2022, at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida.
“Our hearts are broken, there will never be another Paul Sorvino,” his wife Dee Dee Sorvino said in a statement she posted on her Twitter page. “He was the love of my life, and one of the greatest performers to ever grace the screen and stage.”
The Internet Movie Database lists more than 170 films and television credits for Sorvino, who was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. Those credits span from the Carl Reiner comedy “Where’s Poppa?” in 1970 to the upcoming completed films “Pursued” and “The Ride.” His many other credits include “Blood Brothers,” “That Championship Season,” “The Stuff,” “Dick Tracy,” “The Rocketeer,” multiple episodes across two seasons of “Law & Order,” “Romeo + Juliet,” “Moonlighting” (as the father of Bruce Willis’s character), “Joe Torre: Curveballs Along the Way” (in which he played the title character), “That’s Life,” the cult film favorite “Repo! The Genetic Opera,” “The Goldbergs,” and, more recently, the series “Godfather of Harlem.” Sorvino is best known for his role as the slow-moving, food-loving but dangerous Paul Cicero in director Martin Scorsese’s classic mob drama, “Goodfellas.” According to Broadway.com, Sorvino won a Tony Award in 1973 in the Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play category for his role in “That Championship Season.”
Sorvino Made 1 Memorable Appearance on ‘The Next Generation,’ Guest-Starring as Worf’s Foster Brother
“Homeward,” Sorvino’s episode of “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” debuted on January 17, 1994, during the show’s final season. The website Memory Alpha’s synopsis of the episode’s plot reads as follows: “Worf’s foster brother violates the Prime Directive by saving a group of villagers from a doomed planet.” The site described the character as follows: “Nikolai Sergeyevich Rozhenko was a Human cultural observer in the 24th century United Federation of Planets. Nikolai was the only biological child of Sergey and Helena Rozhenko. In 2347, he became the foster brother of a Klingon child named Worf. The two went on to consider themselves brothers well into their adulthood despite their conflicting personalities.”
In addition to his work as an actor, according to the Wall Street Journal, Sorvino enjoyed success as a cook, a director, a sculptor, and a singer. He sang opera in several stage musicals, as well as in concerts, and in such films as “The Cooler” and ” Repo! The Genetic Opera.” According to The Hollywood Reporter, Sorvino performed the role of Alfred in “Die Fledermaus” with the Seattle Opera Company in 1981 and years later starred in a revival of the show “The Most Happy Fella” at Lincoln Center. He also recorded three CDs of music, including “Paul Sorvino Sings,” which was released in 1996 and featured such songs as “Maple Leaf Rag,” “Impossible Dream,” “Sunrise, Sunset,” and “Danny Boy.”
Sorvino’s Career Spanned From 1970 to the Present Day
The New York Times interviewed Sorvino in 1977, just as he was rising to fame. Discussing his career at the time, he said, “Since I was 4, I wanted to be an actor,” he recalled. “It seemed the surest way to express my feelings, and I always had a tremendous need to do that, to have a communion with other people. Listen to that . . . communion . . . that’s my Catholic childhood coming back. A lot of people become actors for the wrong reasons. They seek the applause to make up for a lack of love. But I see acting as a sharing of love, a giving for the love of giving. The getting part of it is just the frosting on the cake.”
Sorvino, according to The Hollywood Reporter, is survived by Dee Dee Sorvino, his third wife, as well as his daughter, Oscar-winning actress Mira Sorvino, his other children, Amanda and Michael, and five grandchildren. In a tweet Mira Sorvino posted on July 25, 2022, she noted, “My father the great Paul Sorvino has passed. My heart is rent asunder — a life of love and joy and wisdom with him is over. He was the most wonderful father. I love him so much. I’m sending you love in the stars Dad as you ascend.”
Dee Dee Sorvino has stated that her husband will be interred at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles, California.