Bada bing!

Tony Soprano and HBO are near a deal neither side can refuse, say sources close to the salary dispute that has threatened to whack “The Sopranos.”
Lawyers for the mob opera’s star, James Gandolfini, and HBO talked into the small hours of yesterday morning, the sources said.
Gandolfini is said to have struck a deal that will pay him slightly more than $1 million for each of the 13 episodes – by increasing the actor’s take from DVD sales, a huge new source of income for hit TV series.
Both sides have filed lawsuits against each other, but the suits are expected to be dropped early this week, clearing the way for a deal – perhaps as soon as midweek.
Production on the show’s fifth – and perhaps final – season was halted last week by HBO.
The pay-cable network declared it would not continue the show without Gandolfini, who plays the Xanax-popping mob boss who is the series’ signature character.
Spokesmen for Gandolfini and HBO declined to comment last night.
But it was the first news that a break might be near in the increasingly bitter salary dispute that began two weeks ago when Gandolfini refused HBO’s “final” offer to double his salary to $11 million a year.
Sources at HBO told the Hollywood trade press that the actor had been demanding $26 million instead – about the same as the highest-paid TV actors, including Kelsey Grammer and the cast of “Friends.”
Others, however, say Gandolfini’s asking price was closer to $16 million – and that the two sides had agreed yesterday to a raise somewhere in the middle.
The breakthrough talks took place in L.A.
It appears that Gandolfini will be the first to drop his suit – claiming that he was no longer under contract to the network because of a minor, technical violation of his agreement – so that HBO can say that the actor was the first to back down.