Skip to main content

Hilarious new Kickstarter aims to fix Scorcese’s last scene in The Departed

Digitally Erase the Rat From the End of The Departed

We live in a world in which deceased actors can be digitally revived for one last starring role. What challenge is it, then, to remove a single scene-ruining rat from an otherwise brilliant movie? That’s the question that caused movie fan (and apparent rodent-as-symbolism hater) Adam Sacks to launch an unlikely new Kickstarter project. His goal: to banish the rat from the end of Martin Scorsese’s 2006 Oscar winner The Departed.

“For those who don’t know, the movie follows two undercover informants, or ‘rats.’” Sacks told Digital Trends. “One is a member of the Massachusetts State Police that’s undercover in a south Boston gang, and the other is a member of that gang and is embedded in the Massachusetts State Police. The movie ends with a shot of an actual rat crawling across a bannister with the Massachusetts State House in the background. It’s a visual metaphor that for, my taste, is a little too on the nose.”

Sacks’ Kickstarter campaign breaks down exactly what its creator hopes to achieve with his tinkering — complete with an hilariously detailed cost breakdown. These include $18.91 to buy a copy of the movie on Blu-ray, $141.54 to buy a Blu-ray player to watch it on, $59 for software to rip the Blu-ray onto a computer, $599 to pay for a visual effects artist to perform the rat removal, $38.31 to buy a pack of 50 blank Blu-ray discs, and $2.71 to buy a black sharpie to label the discs.

One slight hiccup is the fact that, as Sacks acknowledges, he doesn’t actually have the rights to sell Blu-ray copies of his (and Martin Scorsese’s) completed magnum opus. As a result, people wanting the rat-less cut of the movie must contribute $70. “This will allow me to buy you a legal Blu-ray of The Departed, throw that disc away, replace it with my superior version, and mail it to you,” he writes.

Is there a risk that this will prove to be the start of a slippery slope when it comes to Sacks’ movie modification? After all, who’s to say that travesties like the Star Wars “Special Editions” and attempts to colorize classic black and white movies didn’t also start with someone wanting to delete an unwanted rat?

“The thing that would stop me from making further changes is a complete lack of interest in doing so,” Sacks said. “My one and only goal with this project is to digitally erase the rat from the end of The Departed.”

As ever, we offer our usual warnings about the risks inherent in Kickstarter campaigns. If you don’t smell a rat, however, head over to the project’s crowdfunding page for more details.

Editors' Recommendations

Luke Dormehl
I'm a UK-based tech writer covering Cool Tech at Digital Trends. I've also written for Fast Company, Wired, the Guardian…
The 10 most popular TV shows on Netflix right now
Nick Lachey stands next to Vanessa Lachey and points and poses.

Exploring the thousands of titles on Netflix can be both exciting and overwhelming. Content of all types abounds, from dramas and comedies to reality shows and documentaries. There's even a list to help narrow your decision by letting you see the most popular Netflix shows. Every week, Netflix releases its list of the 10 most-watched TV shows over a recent seven-day period.

One of Netflix's most popular dating shows, Love Is Blind, has returned with season 6. The reality series shot right to the top spot in this week's top 10. New additions to the top 10 include Resident Alien, House of Ninjas, The Vince Staples Show, and Taylor Tomlinson: Have It All. Below, we have listed the top 10 shows in the U.S. from February 12 to February 18, along with general information about each show, including genre, rating, cast, and synopsis.

Read more
The best horror movies on Hulu right now
A girl handles a knife in Scream 5.

February might be the month of love and friendship, but for horror fans, it's always fright time, and Hulu is the best place for them. The best horror movies on Hulu are enough to satisfy any fan's cravings, especially those who aren't fans of Cupid and his inopportune arrows. Because, out of all the streaming services, Hulu's horror library might just be the best.

Hulu's horror collection is so large that it might be easy to get lost in it. To help, we at Digital Trends have done the work of going through Hulu's mighty collection of scary movies and selecting the best ones to keep you up at night. Here’s our roundup of the best horror movies on Hulu you can stream right now.

Read more
Borderlands is back! Watch the full trailer for Eli Roth’s upcoming video game movie adaptation
Five people stand at the top of a hole and look down.

Cate Blanchett is on a mission to score a massive treasure in a secret vault in Lionsgate's first trailer for Borderlands, the long-awaited adaptation of Gearbox's bestselling video game franchise.

Bounty hunter Lilith (Blanchett) returns to her home of Pandora to find the missing daughter of Atlas (Edgar Ramírez), the universe’s most powerful S.O.B. To complete her mission, Lilith joins forces with an unlikely group of allies, including Roland, (Lift's Kevin Hart) a mercenary; Claptrap (Jack Black), a wise-cracking robot; Dr. Patricia Tannis (Jamie Lee Curtis), an eccentric scientist; Tiny Tina (Ariana Greenblatt), a young, feral demolitionist; and Krieg (Florian Munteanu), Tina's protector. With the universe at stake, the motley crew battles an alien species and dangerous bandits to "uncover one of Pandora’s most explosive secrets."

Read more