Federico Castelluccio as Furio Giunta
|First appearance||"Commendatori" (episode 2.04)|
|Last appearance||"Eloise" (episode 4.12)|
|Created by||David Chase|
|Portrayed by||Federico Castelluccio|
|Occupation||Former master cheese maker at Nuovo Vesuvio Restaurant|
|Title||Enforcer/Soldier in the Gualtieri crew of the DiMeo Crime Family, soldier in the Zucca Crime Family in Naples|
Furio Giunta, played by Federico Castelluccio, is a fictional character on the HBO TV series The Sopranos. He is an Italian mobster working for Tony Soprano. Eventually, he has to return to Italy after a flirtation with Tony's wife Carmela. Furio has long hair, which he usually wears in a ponytail, and a penchant for elaborate, flashy silk shirts.
Tony meets Furio on a visit to Naples for business discussions with the Neapolitan Camorra mob boss Annalisa Zucca. He convinces her to let Furio come to New Jersey to work for him as part of an international car theft operation. This impulse to integrate Furio into his association emerged once he saw Furio beat a young boy for playing with firecrackers which imitate the sound of gunshots. Tony Soprano saw that Furio had absolutely no inhibitions and a merciless wrath embedded by a sincere loyalty to his boss (Furio shields his boss with his own body when the firecrackers are first heard). In order to get Furio a visa, Tony gets him a job as a mozzarella maker in the Nuovo Vesuvio Restaurant, enticing Artie Bucco with the idea that Tony will pay Furio's salary and he does not have to be on Vesuvio's payroll. Furio does not particularly excel at honest work, mainly because Artie imposes tougher standards on his kitchen workers than restaurants in Italy, such as hair nets and no smoking on duty. Upon his arrival in New Jersey, Furio becomes one of Tony's most feared enforcers, intimidating and beating up multiple people who owe Tony money as well as acting as Tony's driver and bodyguard, to the initial resentment of long time senior Soprano associate Salvatore "Big Pussy" Bonpensiero.
Furio is an extremely loyal and dedicated soldier for his boss Tony, but he does not appear to be a violent individual outside of that context. He also displays a great deal of sentimentality and nostalgia when talking of his native land of Naples and his former employment working in the olive garden of a rich man.
Furio's first assignment is to extract payment from a massage parlor owner whose wife had convinced him to withhold payment. In an earlier visit Chris had acted in an intimidating manner and shoved a paintbrush dipped in paint into his nostril. Furio was a little less restrained - he fearlessly smashes up the place, and shows no hesitation in hitting the guests or the owner's wife. He then breaks the owner's arm with a bat and shoots him in the knee cap - all of which makes a positive impression on Tony. He is one of the few people to know that Richie Aprile was killed, as Tony asks him and Christopher for assistance with dismembering his body at Satriale's. Furio makes collections from low-level associates Matthew Bevilaqua and Sean Gismonte and takes a cut of his own. Furio's grabbiness with Matt and Sean causes problems later, as they are convinced they are being used by Tony, and then attempt shooting Christopher.
Furio's role in the overall plot of season 3 is minor. Most notably, in Amour Fou, Furio is shot in the leg by Jackie Aprile, Jr. when he and his friends Dino Zerilli and Carlo Renzi rob Ralph Cifaretto's card game in an attempt to gain some recognition amongst the crime family and possibly get made. Because of his injury, Furio walks with a cane for the next episode (the finale of season 3), but is fine several months later when season 4 begins. In that episode, Furio accompanies Vito Spatafore when Vito hunts Jackie down and executes him.
In the season 4 episode "Everybody Hurts", a sly Frenchman named Jean-Pierre Colbert cons Artie Bucco into lending him $50,000 dollars for a business investment back in France, then fails to pay him back. Furio is tasked with reclaiming Tony's assumed debt from Jean-Pierre Colbert, which he does.
Furio eventually begins to fall in love with Tony's wife, Carmela, who sees him as a dashing, sensitive man—Tony's polar opposite—but the two never truly become romantically entwined. Carmela tries to deflect her attraction by arranging dates for Furio. For a time, however, there is significant sexual tension between them. Carmela finds excuses to visit Furio, including assisting him in buying and decorating a house, and planning a house-warming party, but never stays alone with him. She brings an unwilling AJ along for cover. At the house-warming they share a sexually charged dance, Furio later claims he forgot his sunglasses at the Soprano house, just as a ploy to talk with Carmela.
When Furio's father dies, he returns to Italy for the funeral. He seeks the advice of his uncle, another Mafia member, telling him that Italy no longer feels like home and that he is in love with his boss's wife. His uncle makes it clear he has to move on or kill his boss. Upon his return Furio withdraws from Carmela, presenting gifts to her children but not her. In the season 4 penultimate episode "Eloise", Furio witnesses Tony's infidelity on a night out at a casino when Tony is dancing and being flirtatious with a stripper. This enrages Furio no end, as he thinks Carmela deserves better. A helicopter has been arranged to take them home and while Tony is urinating on the tarmac, Furio suddenly grabs him by his jacket and contemplates pushing Tony into the back rotor blades of the helicopter, thus making it look like an accident. Furio then pulls him away and plays it off by telling Tony "You were standing too close..." Tony is so intoxicated he only seems slightly fazed and doesn't appear to recall the incident the following day but Furio packs up, moves back to Italy and disappears. Carmela later goes to Furio's house and finds that it is empty and for sale. Carmela is devastated, and eventually reveals her feelings for Furio in an argument with Tony, to which Tony replies "If certain men see him, he's a dead man". In Season 5, it is said that Tony has men looking for Furio in Italy — the last mention of him on the show.