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Hollywood mobsters helping mom-and-pop theaters

The Associated Press, Friday, January 11, 2013, 10:45am (PST)

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Some of Hollywood's big-name mobsters are helping save small-town theaters.

Stars from "The Sopranos" and "Goodfellas" joined with Florida-based non-profit Save America's Cinemas to help smaller theaters transition to digital. The conversion has forced many small theaters to go silent.

The stars gathered Friday in Miami Beach to donate a screen, projector and processor to Cinema Saver of Endicott, NY. Rachel Daddezio with the theater says the new equipment "will save our theater and it will save our community."

Walter T. Shaw, a filmmaker and former jewel for the mafia, started the group. He says as many as 60 theaters have reached out for help.

Tony (Paulie Walnuts) Sirico and Vincent (Big Pussy) Pastore of "The Sopranos" and Mike Starr and Debi Mazar from "Goodfellas" attended the event.

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