Michael V. Gazzo

Michael V. Gazzo
Frank Pentangeli
Michael V. Gazzo portraying Frank Pentangeli in the film The Godfather Part II
Michael Vincenzo Gazzo

(1923-04-05)April 5, 1923
Died February 14, 1995(1995-02-14) (aged 71)
Resting place Westwood Memorial Park
Occupation Playwright, actor
Years active 1953–1995
Spouse(s) Grace Gazzo (3 children)[1]
Children Peppi, Michael, Christopher

Michael Vincenzo Gazzo (April 5, 1923 – February 14, 1995) was an American playwright who later in life became a film and television actor.[2] He was nominated for an Academy Award for his role in The Godfather Part II (1974).


Gazzo was born on April 5, 1923. He was a member of the Actors Studio and would later go on to train such actors as Debra Winger, Henry Silva and Tony Sirico. He authored a gritty Broadway play about drug addiction, A Hatful of Rain, which ran for 389 performances in 1955 and 1956. It starred Ben Gazzara and Shelley Winters in the two lead roles, and subsequently was adapted into a film by Oscar-winning director Fred Zinnemann in 1957. The movie was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role (Anthony Franciosa). A 1968 made-for-television version (as a filmed play) starred Peter Falk, Sandy Dennis and Michael Parks.[3] Gazzo's other screen writing credits include the Elvis Presley American musical drama King Creole in 1958.[4] Gazzo authored the Broadway play The Night Circus, also starring Ben Gazzara.[5]

Gazzo was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Frank Pentangeli in The Godfather Part II. He lost to Robert De Niro, who played Vito Corleone in the same film.[6]

Gazzo died on February 14, 1995, at age 71 due to complications from a stroke.[7] He was buried in the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles.



  1. ^ Brantley, Ben (February 24, 1995). "Michael V. Gazzo, 71, Is Dead - Playwright of 'Hatful of Rain'". The New York Times. Retrieved June 25, 2017.
  2. ^ Biography for Michael V. Gazzo on IMDb
  3. ^ A Hatful of Rain on IMDb
  4. ^ King Creole on IMDb
  5. ^ "The Night Circus @ John Golden Theatre". Playbill. Playbill, Inc. Retrieved June 25, 2017.
  6. ^ Folkart, Burt A. (February 25, 1995). "Michael Gazzo; Film and TV Actor, Playwright". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  7. ^ Brantley, Ben (February 24, 1995). "Michael V. Gazzo, 71, Is Dead – Playwright of 'Hatful of Rain'". The New York Times.


  • Bacarella, Michael, ItalActors: 101 Years of Italian Actors in U.S. Entertainment, The National Italian American Foundation[ISBN missing]

External links