Speed Reads


In 2001, Rudy Giuliani put on a skit of The Godfather. The cast is now riddled with links to crimes.

The theater world is full of superstitions and curses — let Rudy Giuliani's production of The Godfather: The Musical be added to their number. Journalist Tom Robbins dug up the old cast list, with a handful of sharp-eyed Twitter users pointing out that seven people on the list have been indicted since the 2001 skit:

Let's go through one by one, shall we? The first on the list is Ray Harding, the former vice chairman of New York's Liberal Party. Harding was charged in 2009 "with accepting more than $800,000 that prosecutors say was a reward for doing political favors for the former state comptroller," The New York Times reports. The next is ex-New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, indicted on fraud and extortion charges in 2015.

Then comes Sopranos actor Lillo Brancato, who played former New York Rep. Rick Lazio in the skit; Brancato was charged with second-degree murder of an off-duty police officer in 2005 during an attempted burglary (he was ultimately convicted only of the burglary charge). Joseph L. Bruno, the former majority leader of the state Senate, was found guilty of "concealing hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments from a businessman who sought help from the Legislature" in 2009, The New York Times reports. Former Assemblyman Anthony S. Seminerio, who played himself, pled guilty to influence peddling in 2009 and died in prison in 2011.

The list keeps going: Former Republican State Sen. Guy Velella was sentenced to jail for taking bribes in 2004, and former police commissioner Bernard Kerik pled guilty to eight felony charges including tax fraud in 2010.

And that's not counting Tony Sirico's pre-2001 28-arrest-long rap sheet.