Actor Frank Vincent, best known for his role on the hit HBO drama "The Sopranos" has died at the age of 78 from complications of heart surgery at a New Jersey hospital. Vincent, who played mobster Phil Leotard on the award winning series "The Sopranos" suffered a heart attack last week and underwent open-heart surgery early this morning sadly passed away during surgery.

Frank Vincent remembered by 'Sopranos" co stars

The actor's death was confirmed on his official Facebook page by a longtime friend and "Sopranos" co-star Vincent Pastore. Besides "The Sopranos," Vincent had a long and successful film career starring in in several Martin Scorsese films which included hits such as "Goodfellas," "Casino" and Raging Bull."

Vincent, an avid drummer played with Paul Anka

Vincent's greatest success often came from playing mobster type roles.

He also took on the video game voice project In 2001, voicing Mafia boss Salvatore Leone in the controversial, yet popular computer and video games in "Grand Theft Auto III.," and again in "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas" and "Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories."

Frank was an avid drummer and working in his younger years with music greats including of Paul Anka, Del Shannon, Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme and Trini Lopez and the Belmonts. Besides being a well-accomplished actor, Frank Vincent was also a published author, penning the 2006 book, "A Guy's Guide to Being a Man's Man."

He later went on to branch out in the business world developing a line of hand-rolled cigars which have Vincent's picture prominently displayed on the band. Frank Vincent's last acting role is listed as a guest appearance in 2016 on the hit television series" Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" as Bishop Catalano.

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However, fans admit that Frank Vincent did some of his best work while on the "Sopranos" as one of Tony Soprano's biggest and most dangerous enemies. HBO first began airing the mob-drama series in 1999. The show was an instant hit running for six seasons. When the series aired, their very last episode, the finale cliffhanger was and continues to be one of the most talked about of all times leaving fans debating the fate of Tony Soprano.

After the series ended, there was the talk of a "Sopranos" movie, however, following the sudden and unexpected death of James Gandolfini in 2013 from a sudden massive heart attack [VIDEO], talk of a potential movie has slowed.

Actor Frank Vincent will be greatly missed by many who enjoyed watching him take control of a character making the role truly his. Our thoughts are with Frank Vincent's wife and three children, family and friends during this difficult time.