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Tulsa King Producer Terence Winter Says Dwight's Age Adds Urgency To The Story

Sylvester Stallone's Dwight 'The General' Manfredi lets audiences know just how old he is in the pilot episode of "Tulsa King." After a night with Stacy Beale (Andrea Savage), Manfredi reveals he's 75 years old, not exactly an ideal age to be starting over.

The acknowledgment of Manfredi's age is a crucial part of his story and makes "Tulsa King" more than just a fun fish out of water tale. Stallone stars as Manfredi, a New York mobster who finds himself cast into exile — aka Tulsa, Oklahoma — after serving 25 years behind bars and keeping his mouth shut for all of them. Manfredi is not only trying to establish himself as a gangster again. He's also attempting to repair relationships with his family that did nothing but deteriorate while he rotted in a cage for a criminal world he's not so sure he needs or wants to be a part of anymore.

"Tulsa King" is one of the many shows under Taylor Sheridan's umbrella at Paramount — "Yellowstone" and "Mayor of Kingstown" are among the others — but "Sopranos" veteran Terence Winter has also been a big part of shaping Manfredi's story. According to Winter, Manfredi's advanced age is an essential part of the show and gives a unique spin to his redemption tale.

Dwight Manfredi only has so much time for redemption

In an exclusive interview with Deadline, Terence Winter spoke about "Tulsa King" and explained that Dwight Manfredi's age gives the show a ticking clock because he literally only has so much time to actually fix things. This makes every mistake for Manfredi all the more consequential, despite the fact that even Winter admits Stallone is not exactly your typical 75-year-old.

"He doesn't even remotely present as a 75-year-old man, not even close, but he's aware of it when his back starts to hurt. It's the function of knowing there's a limited amount of time left to repair the sins of the past and trying to move forward and maybe not being as young as you once were," Winter said. 

Unfortunately, Winter left his position as "Tulsa King" showrunner at the end of the first season, but the remaining creatives on the team also understand how important Manfredi's age is to his character. Star Sylvester Stallone explained in an interview with the Canadian Press that it's the age factor that made him relate to Manfredi's journey, the filmmaker revealing he's refused calls to retire for years. 

"I could retire ... I've had people beg, and plead, saying I've done enough; that I've had enough injuries, enough of this and that, but I go, 'I don't know man,'" he said.