So long Tony...

Break out your shiny Italian shoes, your crisply pressed slacks and too-tight polo shirt... Sopranos fans, it’s time to mourn.

David Chase, creator of the most scarily consistent show on TV admits that despite noises about a possible seventh season, the next twenty episodes will be the last. Kicking off in the US on the 12 March on HBO, Chase confirms: “There will be these twelve and then another eight, and that will be the end.”

The concluding eight episodes will be shot later in the year and shown in the US in January 2007.

The colossally successful show has snagged 168 nominations since it first burst onto the small screen in 1999, mixing the comedy and drama of Tony Soprano’s double life with such dexterity that it became an instant classic. The man behind the mob is James Gandolfini, who has taken home 3 Emmy awards for his striking performances as Tony – a role he’s not too sad to leave behind.

“I'm too tired to be a tough guy or any of that stuff anymore. We pretty much used all that up in this show.”

Chase added that the rumblings about shifting Soprano and his gang of Jersey goons to the big screen isn’t something that interests him.

“We haven't talked about it in a long time and it's hard to see how it would work," he said. “I think what we're going to be doing the next year and a half would have been that movie.”