Mark Wahlberg Unsuccessfully Pitched a Sequel for ‘The Departed’ Starring 2 Iconic Actors

The Departed is one of Mark Wahlberg’s biggest movies to date. And in anticipation of a second film, the actor pitched a sequel to Warner Bros. with Brad Pitt and Robert DeNiro in mind. 

‘The Departed’ was a critical and commercial success 

Martin Scorsese is known for making Academy Award-winning films. But in 2006, The Departed earned him his first Oscar for Best Director. 

Set in Boston, the crime thriller tells the story of a cop who infiltrates a) one of the city’s most dangerous crime syndicates. It is loosely based on the real-life stories of mobster Whitey Bulgur, corrupt federal agent John Connolly, and the Boston Winter Hill Gang. 

The star-studded cast of The Departed includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, Martin Sheen, Vera Farmiga, Alec Baldwin, and Ray Winston. The film earned dozens of accolades, including four Academy Awards (Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Film Editing) and the Best Director Golden Globe for Scorsese.

Mark Wahlberg pitched a sequel for ‘The Departed’ 

Mark Wahlberg smiling
Mark Wahlberg | Leon Bennett/Getty Images

The Departed writer William Monahan had ideas for a follow-up film. But his vision was never made. 

So, with hopes of reviving the project, Wahlberg joined Monohan in talks with the studio and revealed some of his own ideas for a sequel. But things didn’t go the way he expected. 

“I went into a meeting with Bill Monahan at Warner Brothers to pitch the sequel to The Departed,” Wahlberg told KFC Radio. “And let’s just say the pitch didn’t go very well. He really didn’t have anything fleshed out, but he’s the kind of guy you just trust to go and write something.” 

Wahlberg suggested his pitch would have made for a “pretty good” movie. And he noted he had actors like Robert DeNiro and Brad Pitt in mind. 

Martin Scorsese refused to do a sequel

In a 2016 interview with Collider, The Departed producer Roy Lee revealed that Monahan had come up with an idea for a sequel that would revive characters who died in the original. But at the time, Scorsese was not interested in making it. 

“[Monahan] came up with an amazing idea to make it work,” Lee said. “But it would be so expensive and Scorsese didn’t want to do a sequel.”

The Departed is a loose adaptation of the Hong Kong action thriller Infernal Affairs. Noting how well some movie-to-TV spin-offs have done, Lee revealed that studio executives did discuss developing a TV spinoff of The Departed

The Departed as a concept is amazing,” Lee suggested.” That’s what attracted me to the story, the two moles working on either side of the law, and translating that idea into other settings with new characters, like how Fargo has taken the feel of the Coen Brothers film.”

We were having discussions about making infernal affairs a television series. A different city, so it’s not anything like The Departed, but essentially The Departed as a TV series.”