Johnny Depp on upcoming “Whitey” Bulger role

Biopic of mobster boss of the Winter Hill Gang, James "Whitey" Bulger, starring Johnny Depp, to begin filming next month in Boston.

Actor Johnny Depp will take on the challenging role of James ‘Whitey’ Bulger next month, when filming begins on “Black Mass,” a biopic about the convicted mobster.

“I don’t think of him as Whitey. It’s James ‘Whitey’ Bulger,” the 50-year-old actor told the press last week, while promoting his upcoming science fiction thriller ‘Transcendence,’ which opens April 18.

"The reason to play it is obvious to me,” said the three-time Oscar nominee.  “He’s a fascinating character. I don’t think it’s like anything I’ve done before and I’m very excited to slide into that skin for a little bit.”

Based on the 2001 New York Times bestseller “Black Mass: The True Story of the Unholy Alliance Between the FBI and the Irish Mob” by Dick Lehr and Gerald O’Neill, the film will be directed by “Out of the Furnace” writer-director Scott Cooper, the Boston Herald reports.

Australian actor Joel Edgerton takes on the role of FBI agent John Connolly. Guy Pearce will play Bugler’s brother Billy. While actress Dakota Johnson will co-star as Lindsey Cyr, the mother of Bulger’s only known child.