From the Newark Star-Ledger’s Greg Saitz.

“Sopranos” star Joseph Gannascoli (above, right) was sued by the maker of the diet pill Stacker 2, which alleges the big-boned actor failed to adequately promote its products despite being paid about $316,000 during the past 2 1/2 years.

“He was very difficult to work with all the time,” said Robert Occhifinto, president of Sussex County-based supplement maker NVE. “We had to bend over backward to accommodate his schedule or meet his demands.”

Gannascoli, who last month signed on with another company to endorse a competing diet pill, disputed the allegations. He insisted he had been more than willing to promote the products.

“I begged them to do things but they wouldn’t,” he said in an interview yesterday. “They didn’t like I was doing the gay thing” in his television role.

NVE continues to operate in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The company filed for bankruptcy primarily because of legal costs associated with defending about 140 wrongful-death and personal injury cases. The lawsuits allege problems with previous versions of Stacker 2 pills, which contained the now-banned herbal stimulant ephedra.