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Monahan On Departed 2, Tripoli & More

By Garth Franklin Monday February 19th 2007 04:10AM

Speaking with Collider, in-demand screenwriter William Monahan ("The Departed", "Kingdom of Heaven") talked about his Oscar nomination, upcoming projects and the often asked about "Departed" sequel.

First up he says that due to the way "The Departed" was done, there's no way to incorporate any of the elements from the prequel and sequel to "Infernal Affairs" ('Departed' was a remake of Hong Kong hit 'Infernal') into a potential "Departed" sequel as it "now points in its own direction".

In fact "The reality is that I could propose "Untitled Boston Crime Picture" and sell it for more than I'd get for a sequel... I'll be writing about Boston as long as I live, but whether or not I do it in the form of a Departed sequel is up to other people. I'd honestly love to bring back Dignam [Mark Wahlberg's character]".

He adds that in negotiations to do another adaptation of a script by the "Infernal Affairs" writers and may even do an original film with the Hong Kong film industry.

His long awaited epic about "Tripoli" he owns and will eventually get made - "Tripoli will get made. There's no way it can't be. It'll be made when the time's right". He adds the main reason for it not being greenlit before was most likely Fox not wanting to have two similar period Russell Crowe historical epics competing with each other (it was in production at the same time as "Master and Commander").

As for right now he's working on several projects. First up is an adaptation of David Ignatius' "Body of Lies" which begins shooting in the Fall and follows an idealistic CIA agent posted in Jordan who attempts to bring down a dangerous terrorist leader by sowing an intricate web of discord and suspicion amongst his key followers.

Other adaptations include John Pearson's "The Gamblers" about the high stakes gamblers that made up the Clermont set in 1960's London. Ridley Scott "will maybe do that... no one knows London in the Sixties and Seventies, better than he does".

There's also a "couple more things" with Leonardo di Caprio, "something pending" with Martin Scorsese, the Matt Damon film "The Venetian", and hopefully his violent drama "Blood Meridian" will finally get made.

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