Another movie legend has left us. James Caan, who was best known for his role as Sonny Corleone in The Godfather, breathed his last on July, 6. Caan’s manager confirmed the news to AFP, which was followed by an emotional tweet from his family. Celebs mourned the passing away of the star on social media platforms as well. 

“It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Jimmy on the evening of July 6,” the actor’s family shared with fans on Twitter. “Jimmy was one of the greatest. Not only was he one of the best actors our business has ever seen, but he was also funny, loyal, caring and beloved. Our relationship was always friendship before business. I will miss him dearly and am proud to have worked with him all these years,” wrote Matt DelPiano.

Caan entered the show business in 1960 and it was his hot-tempered character in The Godfather that established him as a bankable actor. He received an Academy nomination for his role as well and reprised it in the form of a small cameo for The Godfather Part II. His other standout roles included a fierce athlete in Norman Jewison’s Rollerball, a jewel thief in Michael Mann’s Thief and an abducted writer in Rob Reiner’s Misery. 

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Though most know him as an on-screen actor, not many were aware of his life beyond films. The actor had an interesting life to be sure. Here’s taking a look at some interesting trivia about the star.

A True-Blue Playboy

The handsome hunk, who grew up in Sunnyside, Queens, New York City, interestingly resided at the Playboy Mansion during the 1970s, albeit briefly. 

The Karate Kid

We all saw James Caan pull off amazing stunts in his films and it is all because of his training in Karate. The actor trained with Takayuki Kubota for nearly thirty years. He is a Master (Rank = 6 Dan) of Gosoku Ryu Karate and was granted the title of Soke Dai by the International Karate Association. Not just that, he also was an avid golfer, too.

What’s In A Name

Those who were close to the actor, referred to him as “Shoulders” and “Killer Caan.” How cool is that?

Not An Italian

Caan played as many as 7 Italian characters, apart from essaying the role of Sonny Corleone. As such, many recognised him as an Italian even though he was not. “I won ‘Italian of the Year’ twice in New York,” the actor had once revealed, who is in fact Jewish, and raised by German-born parents. 

He Was On A Break

Caan took a break from acting between the years 1982 to 1987. He battled depression after losing his sister to leukaemia and even struggled with cocaine addiction. Speaking about that time of his life, Caan called it a “Hollywood burnout.” While on sabbatical, he coached a Little League baseball team. Once his team’s weakest player hit a home run that won a game and he described it as one of the greatest moments of his life.

(Featured Image Credits: Twitter @jamescaan)