Actor Frank Vallelonga Jr, 60, died of coke and fentanyl overdose

Green Book actor Frank Vallelonga Jr, 60, died of cocaine and fentanyl overdose before being shoved from car outside a NYC sheet metal factory at 4am, officials say

  • Frank Vallelonga Jr., appeared in Green Book and was found dead in the Bronx in November and died due to an accidental overdose of fentanyl and cocaine
  • Police found 60-year-old actor’s body outside sheet metal factory in Hunts Point and initially suspected he had died of an OD before being thrown out of a car 
  • Steven Smith, charged with concealment of Vallelonga Jr.’s body, claimed he had been approached by a woman named ‘Pam’ to dispose of the body

Frank Vallelonga Jr., an actor who appeared in the movie Green Book died from an accidental overdose of fentanyl and cocaine. 

New York City officials revealed 60-year-old Vallelonga Jr.’s cause of death on Monday.

His body was found dumped outside a sheet metal manufacturing factory in Hunts Point on November 28, 2022 just before 4 a.m. according to police. 

At the time, authorities had indeed suspected that Vallelonga Jr. died from an overdose and that his body had been tossed out of a vehicle.

Vallelonga Jr.’s death was ruled as accidental by the city Medical Examiner’s Office on Monday, caused by the ‘acute intoxication due to combined effects of fentanyl and cocaine,’ according to a representative from the ME. 

Vallelonga Jr.’s body was discovered after a 911 caller called to report it. 

The body of Frank Vallelonga Jr. was found on a street in the Bronx in November last year

He was discovered outside Hunts Point sheet-metal manufacturing factory in the Bronx

One day later, Steven Smith, 35, was arrested and charged with concealment of a human corpse. 

Police claimed to have video footage of Smith tossing the actor’s body from a car and he later confessed to the crime while police were interviewing him for his involvement in another case. 

Smith told authorities that a woman named ‘Pam’ had approached him and asked him to help her dispose of the body of a person who had overdosed. 

The current status of Smith’s criminal case remains unclear. 

The initial criminal complaint obtained by detailed how Smith ‘walked to the passenger’s side of the vehicle and pulled a human corpse out of the passengers seat and dropped the body onto the sidewalk.’

He then went back to the driver’s side and drove away ‘leaving the human corpse on the sidewalk.’   

Vallelonga Jr. (right) is pictured with his brother Nick Vallelonga (center), who wrote Oscar-winning film Green Book. Their father was Frank Vallelonga Sr. (left). They are pictured here in 2008

‘That dude was already dead. He overdosed. I didn’t have anything to do with that. Pam came up to me and said someone overdosed in the car. I went to the car and drove off. I can’t remember which way,’ Smith told police as per the complaint.

‘I went to Barrett where I dropped the body. I got the body out by pulling him out of the car on the floor. I don’t know the guy at all.’

Vallelonga Jr. was the son of Frank Vallelonga Sr. – more famously known as Tony Lip – who accompanied Black pianist Don Shirley as a bodyguard during a tour of the deep South in the early 1960s.

That story was turned into the Oscar-winning film Green Book. Vallelonga Jr. starred in the film, playing the role of his uncle Rudy Vallelonga.

Nick Vallelonga (right) wrote the film Green Book about his father Vallelonga Sr. (left) who accompanied Black pianist Don Shirley on a tour of the South

After working as a body guard his father Vallelonga Sr. moved into acting and appeared most famously in The Sopranos – in which he played Carmine Lupertazzi.

Prior to his death, it has been said that Vallelonga Jr. had been working with his younger brother and filmmaker Nick Vallelonga, who was the writer of Green Book.

The pair had been collaborating to produce a film called That’s Amore. 

Vallelonga Jr. had a number of smaller roles in various other productions including an episode of The Sopranos.

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