GLAAD | Joseph Gannascoli | News | Sports | Television

Gay Vito Pissed About Pool Cue Pull

Sopranos actor Joseph Gannascoli, who played gay mobster Vito Spatafore and up until last week was marketing a pool cue with his name on it by tying it to the long-running show, has hit back at GLAAD after they forced the company manufacturing the cue to pull it from their website.

CueGLAAD was understandably disturbed by the fact that Gannascoli was marketing what was used as a murder weapon in the series. Gannascoli's character was beaten to death with such a cue and then sodomized with it because he was gay. Gannascoli was marketing the instrument as "a cue to die for".

Neil Giuliano, GLAAD's president, called on Rockwell Billiards to stop selling the item: "It’s highly inappropriate that what served as a very real example of the hateful violence the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community faces is now being used as a gimmick to sell a product. The insensitive inclusion of the pool cue in the ‘To Die For’ marketing theme betrays the legacy of The Sopranos character and is unacceptable."

The company quickly took note.

Said Gannascoli after Rockwell Billiards pulled the cue: "'I'm taking it personal that this has come so far. I'm mad at GLAAD. M-A-A-D.' Gannascoli said GLAAD doesn't care about the abuse he's taken since playing Vito. Sopranos fans have called him names, he said, and he's been attacked in a nightclub. 'In my neighborhood! In Brooklyn! I defended it. I say it's a ... role, morons. It's in every walk of life. Get used to it.'"

Sopranos' Gay Vito Markets Murder Weapon That Bludgeoned Him [tr]

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  1. Dear Mr. Gannascoli,

    Are you gay in "real life"? If not, then shut the fuck up.

    Posted by: Tread | Aug 20, 2007 1:06:49 PM

  2. Someone needs to shove a pool cue up Gannascoli's ass while calling him 'faggot'...maybe then he'll understand why we object.

    Posted by: peterparker | Aug 20, 2007 1:36:09 PM

  3. As much as I lambaste GLAAD, when they're right they're right. But I had another one of my, "I'm on the wrong planet" flashes when I discovered that not all gays think anyone should be concerned about someone making money off of a weapon forceably shoved up a gay man's ass and kill him because, apparently, "fiction" makes it okay. Here's the ubiquitous and popular lesbian writer Ann Rostow in the San Francisco "Bay Times":

    "[T]the humorless watchdogs [at GLAAD] have bared their fangs at a 'grotesque violent' cue stick manufactured by Rockwell Billiards. All you Soprano fans will recognize the character Vito Spatafore, a gay mafioso who was beaten to death and raped with a pool cue during the series. I gather that the new stick is marketed by Joseph Gannascoli, the actor who played Vito, and is called 'a cue to die for'. Gannascoli has also written a cookbook titled A Meal to Die For.

    “GLAAD is calling on Rockwell Billiards and Gannascoli to remove the name ‘A Cue to Die For’ from this product immediately and apologize for using such a vulgar symbol of violence and anti-gay bigotry to make a profit,” snarled the organization in a press release.

    Get a life, GLAAD! Much as we all recoil at defamation, we are talking here about fictional Mafia killers. Would GLAAD like the Soprano writers to apologize for writing the murder/rape scene? Maybe we should insist that all gay and lesbian characters be above reproach and live happily ever after. As for the marketing device, who gives a flying fig?"

    God help us when a gay woman is poopooing the marketing of instruments representing rape and murder associated with being gay.

    Posted by: Leland Frances | Aug 20, 2007 1:52:17 PM

  4. This is probably the most imbecile thing I`ve ever witnessed since Anne Heche going straight and loony.

    Posted by: Toby | Aug 20, 2007 2:02:13 PM

  5. 14 minutes and 58 seconds...

    Posted by: Giovanni | Aug 20, 2007 2:06:39 PM

  6. It would seem he feels that because he's pro-gay (or judging from his comments, more like not anti-gay), he should be given a pass on anything, even if it's legitimately offensive to gay people. But also, as the way, way offbase lesbian writer shows, sometimes gay people even feel like 'I'm gay so I can say or get away with this.' Not always the case. The pool cue is really crazy. I can't imagine anyone thinking it was a good idea to begin with, let alone defending it.

    Posted by: Matthew Rettenmund | Aug 20, 2007 4:03:23 PM

  7. Gannascoli's such a phony, because before they pulled the pool cue, he was described as "apologetic" by The Miami Herald last Tuesday when he told a reporter, "I had no idea [the pool cue] would create this sort of uproar...I'm a great supporter of the gay community."

    If he was apologetic about it, you'd think he'd be as much in favor of pulling the pool cue as GLAAD. Now he says he's furious they pulled the cue, and whines about getting a taste of the homophobia gays are forced to experience every day of our lives. And it's supposed to be so tragic that Gannascoli is subjected to homophobia because why, because he's straight? Boy does that attitude piss me off, the idea that it's worse when straights experience homophobia because they're "innocent, undeserving victims", as if gays aren't equally innocent and undeserving of homophobia. We're supposed to feel so sorry for him because he's lost a little of his hetero privilege and is getting a glimpse of the world through our eyes? Boo fucking hoo.

    Posted by: Johnny | Aug 20, 2007 4:06:32 PM

  8. Why doesn't Vito try to market a Zyklon brand shower head?

    Posted by: zabadak | Aug 20, 2007 4:57:51 PM

  9. Writer Ann Rostow can't seem to differentiate between what's fiction and real life. GLAAD did not ask HBO to alter the Sopranos storyline to make it friendlier to the gay character. But glamorizing the murder weapon and marketing it for profit is tasteless gimmickry and just plain wrong. It's really sad she cannot separate one from the other.

    Posted by: RJ | Aug 20, 2007 5:42:10 PM

  10. ugh.. making money from selling a replica of an instrument of torture and murder ? disgusting ! the next thing ya know somebody's gonna start selling crosses !
    ..what's that you say ? home decoration and jewelry ?? oh jeezus....

    Posted by: el polacko | Aug 20, 2007 5:57:59 PM

  11. Maybe I'll market a "Cruising" cutlery set for the homemaker of today. Wouldn't that be grand?

    Gannascoli needs to get over his pathetic self and loss of income, and perhaps align himself with something more befitting the human race.

    Posted by: Gregg | Aug 20, 2007 7:11:25 PM

  12. Hows about some bbq propane tanks with swatzstikas on them?

    That role pulled him from the chorus and put him center stage and on a gazillion talk shows. He should just give it up already. Apparantly playing the character has taught him nothing.

    Posted by: Trasker | Aug 20, 2007 9:22:01 PM

  13. I followed the url of the clip on YouTube to look at the comments, and they sure aren't sympathetic. So what was the point of having the character be killed in a gay-bashing, the moronic audience just gets it's rocks off to it. They also think it's hilarious that the killer comes "out of the closet", oh yes a gay-bashing killing is certainly the time for levity. Makes me hate that show, and it's creator. I hope he gets a particularly painful form of cancer and lingers on with it for years in agony. And I feel betrayed by the culture as a whole for making the show such a phenomenon.

    Posted by: Johnny | Aug 20, 2007 10:39:33 PM

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