For a crooked mobster to maintain his reign at the top of an empire, he ought to have friends on both sides of the law, and Jimmy Bulger was no exception to that age-old trope. The Irish mobster’s rise to prominence is set to underpin Scott Cooper’s upcoming drama Black Mass, which sees Johnny Depp assume the role of the devious gangster – one who always seems to be at least two of three steps ahead of his closest pursuer.
That’s largely because Depp’s character also worked as an FBI informant, giving him the power to subtly pull the strings from the shadows as his criminal empire rose above the law in many respects, ruling over Boston as one of the city’s infamous kingpins. James “Whitey” Bulger was respected by some and feared by all, and in today’s information dump, Warner Bros. has debuted a string of clips that spotlight the gangster’s sprawling sphere of influence.
Even from these brief vignettes we see the way in which Depp has jumped into the role with both feet, and it’s fair to say that the actor is almost unrecognizable in the part. Adapting many of the mannerisms of the sadistic, amoral Bulger, his portrayal of the mob boss is one that could perhaps attract the attention of the Academy in a few months’ time.
Indeed, Scott Cooper’s Black Mass isn’t only about Depp’s criminal, as it also boasts a starry ensemble that includes Joel Edgerton, Benedict Cumberbatch, Rory Cochrane, Jesse Plemons, Kevin Bacon, Dakota Johnson, Juno Temple, W Earl Brown, Corey Stoll, Julianne Nicholson.
Black Mass is now little over a week away from its theatrical release, when Johnny Deep will step into the shoes of the infamous Irish mobster on September 18.
In 1970s South Boston, FBI Agent John Connolly (Edgerton) persuades Irish mobster Jimmy Bulger (Depp) to collaborate with the FBI in order to eliminate their common enemy: the Italian mob. The drama tells the story of this unholy alliance, which spiraled out of control, allowing Whitey to evade law enforcement while consolidating his power and becoming one of the most ruthless and dangerous gangsters in Boston history.