Suzanne Shepherd, who played the moms of key female characters in “Goodfellas” and “The Sopranos,” died Friday. She was 89.
Born on Oct. 31, 1934, Shepherd also had roles in the films “Mystic Pizza,” “Uncle Buck,” “Requiem for a Dream,” and “A Dirty Shame.”
She made guest appearances on the TV shows “Ed,” “Law & Order” and “Blue Bloods.”
Shepherd, who lived on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, “passed away peacefully very early yesterday morning,” the actor and real estate agent Tom Titone wrote Saturday on Facebook.
“I studied with Suzanne as a young actor. She saw in me what I couldn’t yet see in myself. She introduced me to my husband,” Titone recalled. “She was the officiant to our marriage under a stupendous gazebo in Central Park with a gathering of family and friends. For this, I’ll at all times be grateful.”
He added: “She was an enormous presence. A BIG personality. She roared with life and at it.”
Shepherd is best known for portraying the mother of Karen Hill (played by Lorraine Bracco) in 1990’s “Goodfellas” and the mother of Carmela Soprano (Edie Falco) in HBO’s “The Sopranos.”
Ray Abruzzo, who played Little Carmine Lupertazzi in “The Sopranos,” remembered Shepherd on Instagram.
“Sad to listen to of the passing of Suzanne Shepherd. A force of nature. Actress, teacher. Played Carmella’s mother on Sopranos and Karen’s mother in Goodfellas,” he wrote Saturday.
Shepherd, a longtime regional theater director and Sanford Meisner-trained acting coach, is survived by her daughter, the artist Kate Shepherd; her son-in-law, Miles; daughter-in-law Joyce; and granddaughter Isabelle, in response to The Sun.
Titone said a shiva can be held Monday and Tuesday.