First he was on board. Then there was a deal disagreement and for a while there, it appeared that Johnny Depp wouldn’t end up playing notorious Boston gangster Whitey Bulger. Now, thanks to some fresh overtures and the presence of Crazy Heart’s Scott Cooper in the director’s chair, Depp has signed on to star as Bulger in Black Mass, with the producers talking to Tom Hardy about playing corrupt FBI agent and long-time Bulger friend John Connolly.
This one was first floated back in early 2013, with Barry Levinson directing and Depp in discussions to play Bulger from a script by Mark Mallouk. That in turn was adapted from Dick Lehr and Gerald O’Neill’s book, subtitled The True Story Of An Unholy Alliance Between The FBI and The Irish Mob.