Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Speaking To The Real Donnie Brasco - Legendary Undercover FBI Special Agent Joseph Pistone

I interviewed the real Donnie Brasco today - retired legendary undercover FBI Special Agent Joseph Pistone. 

I interviewed Joseph Pistone for my Crime Beat column, which appears in Philadelphia Weekly. 

Joseph Pistone went undercover for six years with the New York Cosa Nostra Bonanno crime family. His later court testimony put many wiseguys in prison. 

He later wrote a book called Donnie Brasco: My Undercover Life in the Mafia, which was later made into a film with Johnny Depp and Al Pacino. 

Along with Goodfellas and A Bronx Tale, Donnie Brasco is one the three most realistic modern mob movies, in my view. Forget about it, as they say in the film.  

I interviewed Mr. Pistone in 2004 for the Philadelphia Inquirer (see below) and I wrote an online column about him:

Paul Davis On Crime: My Crime Beat Column: Wiseguys, Goodfellas and Godfathers: Gangsters in Fact and Fiction

Today, I was interested in Mr. Pistone's Philadelphia connections, one of which is his friendship with actor/producer Leo Rossi, who is from Northeast Philly. 

The two friends are now doing an interesting podcast called Deep Cover - The Real Donnie Brasco, which can be heard free on a number of outlets.  

My Crime Beat column on Joseph Pistone will come out next Thursday and I'll post it here.


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