Ben Affleck's Whitey Bulger Biopic Brings In The Town Screenwriter To Work On The Script
Everyone who has ďWatch Matt Damon star as gangster Whitey BulgerĒ scrawled drunkenly on their Bucket List, listen up. That project, which Ben Affleck is set to direct, is finally showing some signs of life. Deadline reports Warner Bros. is currently in negotiations to bring screenwriter Aaron Stockard on board to perform some script doctoring on the current screenplay. Itíll be a while before this project will be going into production anyway, so itís okay that theyíre still only in the revision phase.
Stockardís name may not be familiar to you, as heís only had two projects produced, but Iím betting you know his work well. He was a co-writer on both Gone Baby Gone and The Town, both of which were directed by Affleck. It's not exactly hard to figure out how he got this new gig, but thatís hardly a bad thing as I really liked both of those films. Both of them served up a nice balance of crime and human drama, which is what this new film really needs. The Town already had a Bulger-like character, played with badassery by the dearly departed Pete Postlethwaite, so drawing out more of the same thing shouldnít be too much of a stretch for Stockard, especially if heís only adding to a preexisting script.
The project began with Boardwalk Empire creator and The Sopranos writer Terrence Winter holding the pen, but thereís no telling why his initial screenplay needs to be changed. There hasnít really been any information regarding how the story will be told, as Damon and Affleck have debated whether to make this a biopic covering the gangster's entire life or make it something more event-focused.
There are certainly more than enough events in Bulgerís life to choose from. A former FBI informant, the south Boston crime boss was a fugitive from 1994 until he was finally caught in 2011 at age 81. He was put on trial in June of this year for 32 counts of racketeering and extortion, among other things, and was found to have been involved in at least 11 murders - though that number is, realistically, a tad low. They only have so much evidence.
Thereís no telling when the film will go into production, and seeing as Affleck will be busy playing Batman and both directing and starring in the Denis Lehane crime drama adaptation Live by Night next year, I imagine itíll be a while before the project hits theaters. In the meantime, how about a documentary?
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