Magnolia Acquires Whitey Bulger Documentary

Courtesy of Magnolia Pictures
Whitey Bulger

The film about the South Boston gangster, directed by Joe Berlinger, will be released theatrically and on VOD and also air on CNN.

Magnolia Pictures has acquired U.S. theatrical, VOD and home entertainment rights to Whitey: The United States of America v. James J. Bulger, Joe Berlinger’s documentary about Boston gangster Whitey Bulger.

The film, which premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, will be given a day-and-date theatrical and on-demand release in June, followed by a broadcast on CNN later in the year. Magnolia and CNN also partnered on the docs Blackfish and Life Itself, the upcoming film about Roger Ebert also being released this summer. Whitey was produced by RadicalMedia for CNN Films.

"Whitey is a jaw-dropping true crime epic — a real-life The Departed,” Magnolia president Eamonn Bowles said.

Meanwhile, Warner Bros. and Cross Creek are moving forward with their planned feature film Black Mass, which will star Johnny Depp as Bulger and be directed by Scott Cooper.

The deal for Whitey was negotiated for Magnolia by senior vp acquisitions Dori Begley with Cinetic Media on behalf of the filmmakers and CNN Films.