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"The Sopranos" creator sheds light on controversial end

Fans of "The Sopranos" have new insight on the series' famous and controversial finale. The show's creator, David Chase, is known for his secrecy, but now he's offering the most revealing clues about one of TV's greatest mysteries, reports CBS News correspondent Anthony Mason.

The last time we saw the Sopranos, Meadow was running late for dinner with her brother and parents. Tony looks up, and then, blackness. The abrupt ending sparked endless speculation -- bordering on obsession - that Tony Soprano was gunned down.

Chris Christie jokes about Bridgegate scandal, "Sopranos" in New Hampshire 00:48

Chase recently told the Directors Guild of America Quarterly magazine: "I thought the ending would be somewhat jarring, sure. But not to the extent it was, and not a subject of such discussion."

Even presidential hopefuls are asked to take a stand. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie couldn't duck the question in New Hampshire Tuesday.

"We want to know if Tony ever died. What about the last episode?" one person asked.

"What happened to him? You know, he didn't tell me either," Christie said.

Chase said the tense moment, when a shifty-looking character made eye contact with Tony before disappearing into the bathroom, evoked a classic scene from "The Godfather," when Michael Corleone retrieved a gun from the men's room and then famously killed two men with it.

In December 2013, Chase appeared on "CBS This Morning" and talked about the finale.

According to him, the lyrics to Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" -- the music in the final scene -- were meant as commentary on the characters.

"Just a small town girl" -- Carmela, the devoted mob wife -- "living in a lonely world" -- Tony, the crime boss torn between his mob family and his real family.

Even in the final seconds, the song's words were symbolic.

Chase said in the magazine: "The biggest feeling I was going for, honestly, was 'Don't stop believing.' It was very simple and much more on the nose than people think."

"'The Sopranos' was really the first TV series to be analyzed and dissected as if it was a great piece of art, as if it was a painting or a novel," Los Angeles Times TV writer Stephen Battaglio said.

As for Tony Soprano's fate after the screen went black, Chase said: "Obviously he stood more of a chance of getting shot by a rival gang mob than you or I do because he put himself in that situation. All I know is the end is coming for all of us."

While he wouldn't say what the others were, Chase said there were three songs in contention for that final scene, and said he cut the scene to fit "Don't Stop Believin'."

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