Salvatore Leone is a recurring character in the 3D Universe who appears as a main character in Grand Theft Auto III (set in 2001), a supporting character in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (set in 1992) and a main character in Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories (set in 1998). He is the Don of the Leone Family, father of Joey Leone and husband of Maria Latore. He is voiced by Frank Vincent in each appearance.
Life until 1992
Salvatore Leone was born in Palermo, Sicily and also had a brother, as well as a cousin to whom he was close. He later immigrated to the United States and settled in a mansion in Saint Mark's, Liberty City. He also had a wife and son, Joey, although it is unknown when he met his wife or when they had their son. It is presumed, however, that she died prior to 1992 as Salvatore is seen flirting with his future wife, Maria Latore. In the mid 1980s he took control of the Leone Family after a power struggle. During this time he and his uncle began to distrust each other, possibly due to him becoming Don.
Life in 1992
In 1992 he meets Johnny Sindacco, of the Sindacco Family, and agrees to give him $5 million to invest in Caligula's Palace, a casino and hotel in Las Venturas, and takes a one-third ownership alongside the Forelli Family. He is at first reluctant to give Johnny the money, because a Sindacco previously killed a cousin of his. During the negotiations, Salvatore gains control of the books and also successfully suggests Ken Rosenberg as being the man to run the business, knowing that as a recovering drug addict he will be easy to manipulate. He later flies to Las Venturas to run the business, telling Rosenberg that he wanted his money back quickly, making it clear that he was in charge. While in Las Venturas, he meets and befriends Carl Johnson, who had worked for his son in a car theft ring in Liberty City at some point between 1987 and 1992. After being vouched for by Rosenberg, Carl is employed to kill four Forelli gangsters flying into the city to kill Salvatore. Salvatore, satisfied with his abilities, hires Carl to perform a hit at Marco's Bistro in Liberty City. During this time, however, Carl is planning to perform a heist at the casino and helps Rosenberg, Kent Paul and Maccer escape. Carl later performs the heist with the San Fierro based Triads, who run a rival casino, resulting in a furious Salvatore phoning him and threatening to kill him and his family.
During his time in Las Venturas, he also starts a relationship with one of the casino's waitresses, Maria Latore. They first meet when she delivers a sandwich to him in his office, and she sasses him even though he owns the casino. However, she quickly warms up to him, and they had their first date a few days later - throwing large knives at Maccer in the same office. They seem mutually attracted to each other, and Salvatore impresses her by smoothly hitting a bull's-eye with his back completely turned (Maccer is unharmed).
Life between 1992 and 1998
Salvatore Leone, at some point after 1992 and presumably shortly after the heist, returns to Liberty City with his girlfriend Maria. The two later get married and she moves in to his mansion. The relationship, however, quickly deteriorates and she moves out. Salvatore's role at Caligula's Palace and the result of his investment remain unknown, as Salvatore never discusses the issue. During this time he also gets to know Toni Cipriani, who performs a hit on a rival made man before going into hiding for four years, and Vincenzo Cilli, who rises up through the gang to take Cipriani's place. He also meets union boss Jane Hopper, who agrees to give Salvatore and his men access to the harbor while the workers strike, and also Miguel of the Colombian Cartel who begins supplying drugs to the Leone Family. The Leone Family also lose control of parts of the Red Light District, forcing Luigi Goterelli to lose his club to the Sindacco Family.
Life in 1998
In late 1998 Salvatore welcomes Toni Cipriani back to Liberty City and into the gang after four years of hiding. He assigns him to Vincenzo Cilli, who had claimed Toni's place in the gang. The two immediately dislike each other but continue to work together under Salvatore's orders, eventually splitting after Vincenzo attempted to set him up. Toni later kills Vincenzo, seemingly with Salvatore's approval. Salvatore later begins to work with Joseph Daniel O'Toole, the manager of Paulie's Revue Bar and a Sindacco Family member, gaining valuable information on the gangs plans, although he is almost arrested by the police at the club. He later has Toni meet union boss Jane Hopper, encouraging her and her associates to give them access to the harbor, allowing Toni to meet Miguel to purchase drugs, although the deal is ambushed by the police.
Due to his and Toni's work against the Sindacco Family, including preventing a Leone controlled casino from being destroyed and then destroying the Dolls House casino, he is kidnapped by Sindacco Family mobsters. Salvatore is rescued by Toni. This earns Salvatore's respect, telling Toni to call him Sal rather than Mr. Leone. Toni, on instructions from Salvatore, later discovers the Sicilian Mafia's plans to take control of the city and unwittingly assists in the murder of O'Toole by Mickey Hamfists, as Salvatore could not trust someone who had betrayed his own Don.
The Leone Family, having gained more control of the Red Light District when Salvatore personally led an attack to kill the Sindacco mobsters in the neighbourhood, are later attacked by the Diablos but with help from Toni maintain control of the neighbourhood and Hepburn Heights. Toni, however, concedes that they will lose control of Hepburn Heights, which subsequently happens. The Diablos, working with the Sicilian Mafia, are joined by the Triads in attacking Leone interests, as the Triads destroy a Leone controlled warehouse in Callahan Point. Salvatore, realising that Mayor Roger C. Hole wants to blame him for all the crime in the city, flees his mansion and evades the police, living on Staunton Island, despite threatening Toni with a gun for allegedly insulting Salvatore. Salvatore, angry at the Mayor's actions, has Toni kill the Mayor on his morning run in Belleville Park and steals his phone, learning that the Forelli Family had controlled the Mayor. After this, helping him escape arrest twice and rescuing him after being kidnapped, Salvatore makes Toni a made man, which also results in Toni's mother calling off a hit she placed on her son.
Shortly afterwards, Salvatore sends Toni to work for Donald Love, who Salvatore's wants to become Mayor in order to gain more control in the political world of the city. Toni attempts to help, Donald Love's campaign, including an attempt to rig the election, although their attempts fail and Miles O'Donovan is elected after Love's connections to Toni and Salvatore are discovered by the press. Salvatore continues to deploy, especially after Love becomes bankrupt, and rescues him from a Sindacco hit on a Forelli mobster in Fort Staunton. The Forelli and Sindacco families later attempt to reconcile but their meeting is disrupted by Toni on Salvatore's orders, quickly followed by killing a wiseguy about to expose the Sicilian Mafia to Franco Forelli, the Don of the Forelli Family.
Toni also begins to work for Leon McAffrey, a corrupt police officer, on Salvatore's orders and helps weaken the Sindaccos and Forellis hold on the island, including the Uptown Yardies gaining and maintaining control of Newport. During this time Salvatore is arrested and moved to the police station in Shoreside Vale but continues meeting Toni, disguised as Salvatore's lawyer Lionel, and has him use the Southside Hoods to remove the Forelli's from Wichita Gardens. Paulie Sindacco, the Don of the Sindacco Family, is also killed by Toni on orders from Salvatore, and the Yakuza, an emerging threat on Staunton Island, have their tank stolen by Toni. Toni begins working for Toshiko Kasen, seemingly without Salvatore's knowledge, and helps weaken the Yakuza, and again with Donald Love, destroying the Fort Staunton neighbourhood and weakening the Forelli Family. Salvatore is later taken for trial, is protected by Toni on the way, and is later freed by the court.
Salvatore returns to his mansion and decides to take out Massimo Torini, the right-hand man of the gangs leader Uncle Leone. Salvatore and Toni successfully manage to kill Torini and rescue the Mayor who had been kidnapped, reminding the Mayor that he now worked for the Leone Family. Salvatore, having successfully defeated the Forelli and Sindacco Families and the Sicilian Mafia, discusses the position of the mafia in the city, realising that they had thrown control of the city away to a number of new gangs. Salvatore and Toni, however, celebrate their success at Momma's Restaurante and meet Salvatore's uncle, who tells Salvatore that "Every dog has his day", a comment ignored by Salvatore.
Life between 1998 and 2001
Between 1998, when he was in court before being freed, and 2001 he had been tried on four separate occasions, winning each of the cases. He was later put on trial again in April 2001, being accused of tax evasion with $450,000 in undeclared income, although he wins the case after lawyer Maurice Goldberg successfully convinces the court that Salvatore is dyslexic and struggled with taxes. He was, however, found guilty of illegally important food stuffs from Sicily without a license, and was fined, as well as having to pay the owed taxes. The Liberty Tree, in July 2001, published articles on Joey Leone, Toni Cipriani and Luigi Goterelli, publicly suggesting their links to the criminal underworld. The Leone Family also gain full control of the Red Light District and re-open Sex Club Seven, although the gang do lose their interests on Staunton Island and in Shoreside Vale, as well as Hepburn Heights to the Diablos. During this time Maria also moves back in to Salatore's mansion.
The Leone Family, by October 2001, were struggling to maintain their control of Portland due to increased pressure from the Triads, Diablos and primarily the Colombian Cartel, who established a secret drug manufacturing plant on a freighter in Portland Harbor. Despite the problems, Salvatore continues to run the gang from his mansion and is introduced to Claude, a convict who escaped in a police convoy ambushed by the Cartel. Claude attracts the interest of Salvatore's wife Maria who he escorts to an illegal club before returning her to Salvatore's mansion. Salvatore, happy with his work, has him follow and kill Curly Bob, a bartender at Sex Club Seven, after Claude discovered that he had been selling secrets to the Cartel in return for the drug SPANK.
Salvatore later has Claude and 8-Ball, who Claude had escaped the convoy with, destroy the freighter used by the Cartel to manufacture SPANK, which had seemingly gained Claude the respect of Salvatore. Maria, however, had told Salvatore that she had become involved with Claude. Maria's story, a lie, later led Salvatore to meet and agree to a truce with the Cartel, and to kill Claude with a booby trapped car. Maria discovers the plot and informs Claude, with the pair fleeing to Staunton Island with Yakuza co-leader Asuka Kasen, an old friend of Maria's. Asuka, looking for Claude to prove his loyalty to her, has him return to Portland and kill Salvatore after leaving Sex Club Seven.
Salvatore Leone was a very ruthless mob boss and was quick to anger. He had little tolerance for competition and often used hired goons to damage rival gangs. His relationship with his son Joey was not great since he cared more about cars and his auto shop than his father's legacy. He instead favoured Toni Cipriani, a high ranking member of his gang and trusted him more than his son. One of Salvatore's most prominent traits was his extreme paranoia, which was most likely caused by the betrayal of Carl Johnson, a formerly trusted associate. His paranoia was so great that he even pointed a gun at Toni, his most loyal friend.
- Salvatore Leone appears on posters for the film Badfellas in GTA III. This is a reference to the film Goodfellas, in which Frank Vincent appeared. The posters can be found at Sex Club Seven in the Red Light District of Portland, Liberty City.
- Salvatore's character model in GTA III is based on Don Corleone from The Godfather, albeit more foul mouthed.
- Salvatore means savior in Italian.
- Salvatore being sued for tax evasion is probably a reference to Al Capone.
- Salvatore Leone is credited first in both Grand Theft Auto III and Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories, despite not being the protagonist in either of the games.
- Internal files on Salvatore are named "Frankie" instead, most likely named after the voice actor.
- Salvatore Leone is extremely paranoid, even admitting so to Toni Cipriani during the mission Driving Mr. Leone.
- Salvatore's relationship with Maria Latore is volatile, with the two frequently arguing, yet they stay together due to money, with Maria enjoying the luxury of purchasing items with his money. She attempts to start relationships with both Toni Cipriani and Claude, despite a lack of interest from both of them, resulting in Salvatore becoming more paranoid.
- GTA III
- Salvatore's Called A Meeting
- Chaperone (Boss)
- Cutting the Grass (Boss)
- Bomb Da Base Act I (Boss)
- Last Requests (Boss, Betrayal)
- Sayonara Salvatore (Killed)
- GTA San Andreas
- GTA Liberty City Stories
- Don in 60 Seconds
- The Offer (Boss)
- Ho Selecta! (Boss)
- Frighteners (Boss)
- Rollercoaster Ride (Boss)
- Contra-Banned (Boss)
- Salvatore's Salvation
- The Guns of Leone
- Sindacco Sabotage (Boss)
- The Trouble With Triads (Boss)
- Driving Mr. Leone (Boss)
- A Walk in the Park (Boss/Voice)
- Making Toni (Boss)
- Caught in the Act (Boss)
- Search and Rescue (Boss)
- Taking the Peace (Boss/Voice)
- Shoot the Messenger (Boss/Voice)
- Rough Justice (Boss)
- Dead Reckoning (Boss/Voice)
- Shogun Showdown (Boss/Voice)
- The Shoreside Redemption (Boss)
- The Sicilian Gambit (Boss)
- Mickey (has Johnny Sindacco kill him to make room for a new manager in Caligula's Palace)
- Four Forelli hitmen (has Carl "CJ" Johnson intercept and kill 4 hitmen on their way to kill Salvatore)
- Marco Forelli (the deleted name of one of Forelli Family killed when Salvatore sent Carl Johnson to kill them in Liberty City)
- Joseph Daniel O'Toole (has Mickey Hamfists execute him because he was untrustworthy for betraying his own Don)
- Mayor Roger C. Hole (has Toni Cipriani kill the mayor for trying to blame all of the constant and current crimes happening in the city on him)
- Paulie Sindacco (has Toni kill him for his possible involvement in his arrest)
- Massimo Torini (has Toni kill him to prevent the Sicilian Mafia invasion, and for trying to have them killed)
- Curly Bob (has Claude kill him for selling Leone Family secrets to the Colombian Cartel in return for SPANK)
- Salvatore Leone: "Just a Business Man". Julius Cohen and Liberty Tree.
- Salvatore Leone: "The Sindaccos and the Leones? That's impossible. That's been impossible since your associates whacked my cousin." (from The Introduction DVD)
- Frank Vincent Internet Movie Database entry. Internet Movie Database.
- Maria Latore: "Listen Salvatore, thinks that we're going behind his back. So he was offering you to the Cartel, in order to make a deal. I couldn't let him do that, I mean the worst thing is... it's my fault. I told him we were an item, don't ask me why I don't know. Look you're a marked man on Mafia turf and I've got to get out of here to. I've seen too much killing. Too much blood. This is a friend of mine ok, she's an old friend... it's Asuka, she's someone we can trust." (from the Last Requests mission)
- Salvatore Leone: "Don't play dumb with me, kid. I was playing dumb when your mother was still turning tricks."
Toni Cipriani: "What's your problem?"
Salvatore Leone: "I know what you've been saying about me. You think I'm an idiot? Huh? Is that what you think?" (from the Driving Mr. Leone mission)
- Salvatore Leone: "I'm getting paranoid Toni. Really fucking paranoid. Just because I think everyone hates me doesn't mean that they don't, know what I mean? Someone is out to get me. It's that fucking mayor! He's gonna blame me for all the shit that's been going down in the neighbourhood. All of it. Not just the shit I did but all of it." (from the Driving Mr. Leone mission)