Ok, here’s a pairing you don’t see everyday. While Johnny Depp and Guy Pearce together and side-by-side in the Whitey Bulger gangster pic “Black Mass” would have been a terrific paring, “The Rover” star has had to drop out for scheduling reasons. Alas, nothing to fear here Cross Creek Productions has found a more than viable replacement with in-demand actor Benedict Cumberbatch.
Cumberbatch will portray Billy Bulger, Whitey Bulger’s straight and narrow brother, who, unlike his sibling, is law abiding. Directed by Scott Cooper (“Out Of The Furnace“), “Black Mass” has seen it share of ups and downs: Depp himself once bailing because the production could not afford his expensive quota, actor Tom Hardy vacating from the role Joel Edgerton would eventually take and enough general uncertainty that it seemed Warner Bros. (who co-financed the project) would finally give up on it and move on. But the production has persevered and this current iteration of the film has held: “Black Mass” began shooting his week.
Based on the book “Black Mass: The True Story of an Unholy Alliance Between the FBI and the Irish Mob,” Mark Mallouk penned the screenplay. Additionally, Adam Scott (“Parks and Recreation“) has also joined the cast and he will be playing another FBI agent, presumably working alongside Edgerton.
Co-starring Dakota Johnson, Juno Temple and Jesse Plemons, Depp will play the notorious Boston gangster while Joel Edgerton will play a disgraced FBI agent who aided Bulger and was sentenced to 40 years in prison despite maintaining his innocence. And oh yeah, Adam Scott has also joined the movie, playing FBI agent Robert Fitzpatrick. And with Ben Affleck off in super hero world as Batman perhaps Cooper’s drama will fill the intelligent crime void for WB in 2015. [Boston Globe/THR]