Cullotta, the real-life counterpart to Santoro’s right-hand man, Frank Marino (Frank Vincent), actually led the team of thieves called the Hole in the Wall Gang portrayed in the movie “Casino” as Nicky’s operation. Santoro’s real-life counterpart, Spilotro, did not participate in the robberies as Santoro is depicted in the film, but in real life Cullotta gave Spilotro a share of the profits from the crew’s illegal activities (per Deadline).
In a 2015 with UproxxCullotta said after moving to Las Vegas, Spilotro gave Cullotta the green light to put together a team, telling Cullotta, “Just make sure I get a percentage. I don’t want to meet your team. I don’t want to know who I’ll tell you what I want them to do I’ll never give them orders directly they’ll go through you And whenever you have money to give me you give it directly.
Cullotta and Spilotro grew up together and began their life of crime together as young men in Chicago. Cullotta told Upproxx, “I became friends with Tony, and we started hanging out together, flying together, and doing everything together.” But after a failed robbery attempt led to an arrest, Cullotta turned state’s evidence when he suspected Spilotro put a hit on his name. Cullotta was in the witness protection program at one point, but resurfaced, acting as a consultant for Scorsese’s 1995 film, while running a Vegas mob touring agency and YouTube channel. Cullotta is dead at the age of 81 in 2020 due to complications related to Covid.