Johnny Depp has been tapped to play mobster James “Whitey” Bulger in an upcoming movie.
The Pirates of the Caribbean star will tackle the role of the Boston gangster in the drama Black Mass. According to Yahoo! News, the film will be based on the non-fiction book Black Mass: The True Story of an Unholy Alliance Between the FBI and the Irish Mob by authors Dick Lehr and Gerald O’Neill.
The film will be spearheaded by Rain Man director Barry Levinson. Depp and Levinson previously worked together in the crime drama Donnie Brasco, another mob story inspired by true events.
According to Deadline, a release date for Black Mass has not been set. However, production on the drama is set to begin this May.
Cross Creek’s Brian Oliver said in a recent statement:
“I could not be more thrilled to have the biggest star in the world and Academy Award-winning director Barry Levinson to finally bring this incredible story to the big screen.’Black Mass’ expertly details the twists and turns of this highly complex story, painting a vivid portrait of Boston’s underbelly and its corrupt political machine, as well as exposing the worst scandal in FBI history. It’s also an examination of loyalty to family, Irish heritage, and South Boston.”
Sky News reports that “Whitey” Bulger spent a decade on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list. After years on the run, he was eventually arrested at his home in Santa Monica, California in 2011. His trial is currently set to begin later this year.
In addition to Black Mass, Johnny Depp is set to reprise his role as pirate Jack Sparrow in the next installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. The film isn’t expected to arrive in theaters until July of 2015.
Are you a fan of Johnny Depp? Do you think he’s the right person to portray “Whitey” Bulger?