How do you make a sequel to a movie where almost every main character is killed off in the end? (SPOILERS!!!!) That’s the dilemma facing William Monahan, who has been quietly toying with a sequel to the smash hit Martin Scorsese crime film The Departed.
The Departed is based on the Hong Kong movie Infernal Affairs, which was actually the first in a trilogy – even with a similar scorched earth finale. In Hong Kong they made the sequel a prequel and the third one is still a mystery. To me, at least – I haven’t seen it. Probably plenty of people have, though, and many will even write in to berate me*.
According to Mark Wahlberg, Monahan is thinking about following his character, Dignam, into all-new adventures. It seems the writer has written off the idea of a prequel, which is good because it’s a gimmick. Wahlberg claims a part is being written with Robert DeNiro in mind.
If DeNiro came onboard, it would be exciting, especially if Scorsese breaks a decades-long streak of never making sequels to his own films (The Color of Money is a sequel, but to The Hustler) – the two, whose collaboration produced some of the all-time best American cinema – haven’t worked together in over a decade, since Casino. But Scorsese hasn’t said yes or no yet, and I imagine he won’t want to taint the Oscar race with squalid sequel talk.
I don’t know that I would be excited for a sequel, but I would love to see Monahan and Scorsese together again, working on another foul-mouthed and excellent crime movie of some sort.
*Especially because I think The Departed is miles better.