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Robert De Niro Takes on James Gandolfini Role on HBO's ‘Criminal Justice’

Robert De Niro Takes on James Gandolfini Role on HBO's 'Criminal Justice'

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De Niro joins seven-part miniseries

Robert De Niro is attached to act on the HBO miniseries “Criminal Justice” in a role originally played by “Sopranos” veteran James Gandolfini, according to an individual close to the project.

The seven-part miniseries was thrown briefly into limbo by Gandolfini's death. But now it marks De Niro's entry into television, one of the most notable cases of an A-lister turning his attention to the small screen.

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Gandolfini starred in the pilot before his death in June.

HBO CEO Richard Plepler and president of programming Michael Lombardo said in July that co-writers and executive producers Richard Price (“The Wire”) and Steven Zaillan (“Schindler's List”) were working hard on the show as the network decided what to do after Gandolfini's death.

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“James’ passing took the wind out of our sails quite a bit at HBO and so it's taken some time to be able to have conversations with Steve about the future of that,” Lombardo said at the time.

The miniseries, a New York City crime drama, is based on the BBC series of the same name. Gandolfini, who was among the series’ executive producers, will remain posthumously as an executive producer.

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Production on the series will likely begin in March.

Peter Moffat, who created the BBC series, is also executive producing, with Jane Tranter, Mark Armstrong and Nancy Sanders. Zaillian is directing. Garrett Basch is producing.