If you liked A Bronx Tale the movie, then you’ll love the play, promises Chazz Palminteri, who will be performing the one-man show at 8 p.m. Thursday at Seminole Casino Coconut Creek.
You may not realize that the 1993 movie directed by Robert De Niro was based on Palminteri’s 1990 play that became a hit in Los Angeles and later moved to Off-Broadway.
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The plot follows a young man growing up in NYC in the 1960s who is torn between two male figures in his life — his hard-working father (played by De Niro in the flick) and local mob boss Sonny (Palminteri).
Though he has had a successful film career with more than 50 movies (The Usual Suspects, Analyze This, Mulholland Falls), Palminteri has a soft spot for ABT, which he performs about twice a month around the country.
“It’s very visceral to get up there and do all the characters,” says the 62-year-old. “It’s my life, and I give it my all. When it’s over I’m flying, then I crash.” To prepare for the production — no understudy! — he makes sure he is physically fit. “It’s a hard show, gut wrenching, so I take care of myself. I stretch, I do yoga, get massages,” he says, adding that the show takes an emotional toll. “Every time I do it I go back to that space. I visit everyone again. My neighbors, my friends, my dad who passed away a few years ago at age 90.”
Mom’s still alive and proud of the story and of all her son’s success, which includes a best supporting Oscar nod for Bullets Over Broadway.
“Oh, God, you kidding me? My mom loves it. Both of them did. I am very happy about that.” And when Palminteri goes back to the old neighborhood, he’s treated “like the pope. It’s crazy.”
Tickets: 954-977-6700; seminolecasinococonutcreek.com