The Departed, By the Numbers

The Boston crime epic turns 10. It was released a decade ago on October 6, 2006.

the departed

Leonardo DiCaprio tussles with Damon in a scene from The Departed. / Photograph via Warner Brothers

From thick Southie accents to Irish mob mayhem, The Departed is undoubtedly one of the most Boston movies ever to grace the silver screen. Ironic, then, that this tale of double-crossed cops and robbers started out as the Hong Kong action flick Infernal Affairs, which Dorchester-born screenwriter William Monahan recast as a ripping yarn modeled on our own city’s most notorious criminals. The result: Martin Scorsese’s 2006 gangster film—starring authentic locals Matt Damon and Mark Wahlberg—not only racked up a slew of accolades (including four Oscars), but also managed to make Dropkick Murphys’ “I’m Shipping Up to Boston” a national earworm. As The Departed celebrates its 10th anniversary this month, let’s take a look back at this modern classic.


Number of F-bombs dropped.


The symbol Scorsese used throughout The Departed to foreshadow a character’s death; he got the idea from Scarface (1932).


Number of Oscars won.

“He’s a mad, bad nut job.”

—Jack Nicholson, on his Whitey Bulger–inspired character, Frank Costello.

Filming Locations

120 Tremont Street
The top floor of the library at Suffolk University Law School was transformed into the incredible pad of corrupt cop Colin Sullivan.

Long Wharf
Mobster Frank Costello tangles with top cop Captain Queenan (played by Martin Sheen) dockside.

Boston Common
The site of the cops-versus-firefighters rugby scene.

A tense chase scene was shot on Tyler Street.


The inspirations behind the film and its hit song, “I’m Shipping Up to Boston.”

Character: Mole infiltrating the police
Infernal Affairs (2002): Lau Kin-ming (Andy Lau)
The Departed (2006): Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon)

Character: Mole infiltrating the mob
Infernal Affairs (2002): Chen Wing-yan (Tony Leung)
The Departed (2006): Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio)

Character: Mob boss
Infernal Affairs (2002): Hon Sam (Eric Tsang)
The Departed (2006): Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson)


Dropkick Murphys begin playing as a band.


While looking through Woody Guthrie’s archives, Dropkicks frontman Ken Casey discovers a lyrical fragment about a “sailor peg,” which the Dropkicks set to music.


The Dropkicks release their album The Warrior’s Code, featuring the single “I’m Shipping Up to Boston.”


The Departed opens in the U.S., prominently featuring “I’m Shipping Up to Boston” on the soundtrack.


“I’m Shipping Up to Boston” is certified platinum by the RIAA.