First Take: Little Steven Van Zandt Page 7

Sopranos Intermezzo

You know, your comment, "we shouldn't always do something just because we can," sounds like a plot from that TV show you're on... [laughs and chuckles] There are all kinds of life lessons in The Sopranos, I gotta say. [more laughs from both]

You must be feeling pretty good about Season 6. [The first 12 episodes of Season 6 aired on HBO this past spring. Filming has just commenced on the remaining eight episodes of the final season, which will air in early 2007.] I've enjoyed every year. The writers continue to be terrific. Anyone who's disappointed that there's a year and a half between seasons, all I have to do is point them to the quality of the show and ask, "Look, is that worth waiting for, or do you want something that's not quite as good 4 months earlier?"

So how did it feel to be "The Boss" for a little while? [Van Zandt's character, Silvio, briefly took over as The Boss of the family when Tony Soprano was incapacitated after the first episode of Season 6.] Oh, wow. That's the brilliance of the writing. They knew that my character, Silvio, is probably the only guy who doesn't want to be The Boss. He's quite happy being number two. He wasn't happy about things, and for him it turned out to be both a physiological and psychological ailment. Good writing.

Will anybody in the E Street Band give you the business about being "The Boss"? Well, I was literally The Boss for just one show. It's not gonna come up. [chuckles] We [the band] probably won't be getting back together until 2007 anyway.

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