A few weeks ago it was revealed that after stepping away from the Whitey Bulger biopic Black Mass last year, Johnny Depp was circling the project again. He got interested again after shooting of the movie was delayed and the director swapped from Barry Levinson to Scott Cooper. Now Deadline reports that Depp has finalised his deal to play the Boston crime.
They also report that Tom Hardy is in talks to play FBI agent John Connolly. Joel Edgerton was previously attached to play Connolly, but he is no longer involved in the project. There’s no news on how close Hardy is to signing.
Mark Mallouk and Jez Butterworth wrote the original script, adapted from Black Mass: The True Story Of An Unholy Alliance Between The FBI And The Irish Mob by Dick Lehr and Gerard O’Neil. The story James ‘Whitey’ Bulger, a major player in organised crime, who became an FBI informant with the help of his childhood friend, the FBI agent John Connolly. Bulger wanted to rid his neighbourhood of Italian mafia elements. While that may sound like a good thing, it actually just strengthened the grip Bulger’s Winter Hill Gang’s grip had on the community.
The FBI eventually double-crossed Bulger, causing the criminal to go into hiding for more than a decade, before he was eventually caught hiding out in California in 2011.
Shooting is is scheduled to begin in May.