Tony Musante, ‘Oz’ Star, Dead at 77

Tony Musante, 'Oz' Star, Dead at 77

Getty Images

Actor came to prominence as star of “Barreta” precursor “Toma”

Tony Musante, who recently starred as a mafia boss on the HBO series “Oz” but was best-known for playing a real-life Newark, N.J. detective in the “Baretta” precursor series “Toma,” died Tuesday due to complications resulting from surgery, the Los Angeles Times reports.

He was 77.

Born in Bridgeport, Conn., in 1936, Musante caught the attention of television audiences with the ABC cop series “Toma,” which was baased on the the biography of Newark detective David Toma. The series, which ran for one season from 1973 to 1974, was later retooled as “Baretta,” starring Robert Blake, which ran on ABC from 1975 to 1978.

Also read: Hollywood's Notable Deaths of 2013

Musante also appeared on the soap opera “As the World Turns,” and was nominated for an Emmy award for a 1975 episode of “Medical Story.”

In later years, Muscante starred as mafia boss Nino Schibetta on the HBO series “Oz.”

  • Gongman

    The older movie buffs among us will remember Musante less from his TV work than his memorable turns in late 60s fare like THE INCIDENT, THE DETECTIVE, and the spaghetti western THE MERCENARY.

  • Trombone

    He stunk.

  • Spellchecker

    I always thought that Toma was better than Baretta.

  • Goggles Pisano

    Toma was a lot better than Baretta. But does anyone remember the film where he played a young gang banger terrorizing people on a subway train?