1 of 2 | Left to right, actors Jerod Haynes, Dominic Chianese and Frankie Faison can be seen in the new drama "The Village," starting Tuesday. Photo by Virginia Sherwood/NBC
March 19 (UPI) -- Frankie Faison and Dominic Chianese love being recognized for their most famous roles, but said they are excited to play entirely different characters in the NBC drama The Village.
Faison played Barney, the caretaker of serial killer Hannibal Lecter in the Silence of the Lambs film franchise, while Chianese is best known as the New Jersey mob boss Uncle Junior on The Sopranos.
The Village is set to premiere on Tuesday. Faison and Chianese play Brooklyn apartment building neighbors who look after each other and the other residents played by Lorraine Toussaint, Moran Atias, Michaela McManus, Jerod Haynes, Grace Van Dien, Warren Christie and Daren Kagasoff.
"Starting over again and creating from the floor up, that's the thrill of it. It's unknown territory," Faison, 69, told UPI during a recent press day with the cast in New York.
"It's a process that continues to grow," Faison added. "Dominic and myself have lived a long time and we've had a lot of great experiences and we bring a lot of those experiences to this show."
Chianese, 88, agreed with Faison's remarks and said viewers will likely relate to their characters because they may know people like them in their own lives.
"It's a personal kind of show. People really share their pains, their sorrows and their joys in the building. It's a New York show. I like it," said the Bronx native, who spent most of his life living in apartments. "I'm reminded of my youth."
The show features a diverse cast, including actors as young as 17, and covers the entire spectrum of human emotion.
"It's about love, caring, sharing, laughter. It's about heartache. It has so many wonderful elements," said Faison.
"You're always asked, 'What was your best job?' It's always the job you're in now. I can say that with a great deal of satisfaction because it is."
"There's a closeness. We tease each other," Chianese said, after Faison asked if he still carried the gun he used on The Sopranos.
Chianese isn't involved in Newark -- the planned prequel movie to The Sopranos series -- but he was glad to hear franchise creator David Chase had returned to his keyboard.
"I think it's a great idea. I'm happy for David that he's writing again. He's a wonderful writer," Chianese said, adding he still gets a kick out of fans who yell, "Uncle Jun!' when they see him. "It makes me feel good."