James Gandolfini's friends and family paid tribute to the late actor at his funeral in New York yesterday (June 26th).

The Sopranos creator David Chase was among the speakers, and he spoke about his friendship with Gandolfini in the form of an open letter to the actor.

He said: "I think you were such a great actor, because of that boy inside. I think your talent is that you can take the immensity of humankind and the universe and shine it right back at us."

The actor's wife Deborah Lin said her husband was "an honest, kind and loving man" in her speech.

She told the mourners: "He cared more about others than himself. He took the time to ask others in the course of the day how they were doing."

Gandolfini's Sopranos co-stars Edie Falco, Lorraine Bracco, Michael Imperioli, Steve Buscemi and Jamie-Lynn Sigler also attended the funeral which took place at the Cathedral Church of St John the Divine.

The actor, who is best known for his role as mob boss Tony Soprano, died of a heart attack at the age of 51, while on holiday with his young son in Italy.