Martin Scorsese Has a Very Professional Reason for Abandoning WB: “I can’t work here anymore”

Martin Scorsese chose artistic vision over profit.

Martin Scorsese Has a Very Professional Reason for Abandoning WB: “I can’t work here anymore”


  • Martin Scorsese recalled his feud with Warner Brothers over the film 'The Departed'.
  • The studio wanted him to change the ending and turn it into a franchise.
  • Scorsese cut his ties with WB and worked with Paramount Pictures instead.
Show More
Featured Video

Martin Scorsese had a long-enduring partnership with Warner Brothers before he decided he could no longer make any deals with them. Fans would remember how the veteran filmmaker slammed blockbusters such as Marvel movies, proving he isn’t a huge fan of franchises.

Martin Scorsese
Martin Scorsese

This is the main reason why he severed his ties with the studio, apart from the executives who meddled with his creative vision for the 2006 film The Departed. What exactly did Warner Brothers tell Scorsese?

RELATED: Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro Took a $159M Gamble With Ensemble Netflix Film After Streamer Surpassed Independent Studios With One Promise


Martin Scorsese Recalled Feud With Warner Brothers

In a recent interview, The Irishman director Martin Scorsese revealed his rift with Warner Brothers began when they objected to his film’s ending. The Departed boasted an A-list cast, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon, and Mark Wahlberg.

The finale would get both DiCaprio’s and Damon’s characters killed off. Warner Brothers insisted one of them should survive for a sequel to be possible. This made Scorsese very upset as he explained to GQ:

What they wanted was a franchise. It wasn’t about a moral issue of a person living or dying.”

RELATED: “They have earned the right”: Iron Man Director Jon Favreau Felt Indebted To Martin Scorsese Despite Latter’s Brutal Criticism Against His Work

The Departed
The Departed

The filmmaker recalled a test screening where everyone left the room feeling ecstatic, except for the people from Warner Brothers. He continued:

And then the studio guys walked out, and they were very sad because they just didn’t want that movie. They wanted the franchise. Which means: I can’t work here anymore.”

Scorsese had a significant connection with Warner Brothers as they distributed his first two studio movies: Mean Streets (1973) and Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (1974). He also worked with them for After Hours (1985), Goodfellas (1990), and The Aviator (2004). After The Departed, he called it quits.

RELATED: Martin Scorsese Learned His Lesson After His Controversially Condemned 1988 Film Starring Willem Dafoe, Later Tested It on Liam Neeson’s Movie


Martin Scorsese Doesn’t Make Movies For The Awards

Martin Scorsese Oscars
Martin Scorsese won an Oscar

The Departed won Martin Scorsese his first and only Oscar. Although he has been nominated for Best Director several times, he does not put a premium on it. In the same conversation with GQ, he shared:

When I didn’t get the Oscar, I understood that that wasn’t my lot in life. But I always said this: just be quiet and make the movies. You can’t make a movie for an award. Sure, I would’ve liked it, but like, so what? I mean, I had to go on and make pictures.”

Still, he did not disregard the recognition. In fact, winning the Oscar inspired him to create Shutter Island (2010), a psychological thriller film starring Leonardo DiCaprio. This time, it was distributed by Paramount Pictures.

RELATED: “I literally never forgot it”: Tom Cruise Learnt His Lesson From Acting Legend Paul Newman After Trying to Flex His Charming Looks in $52M Martin Scorsese Movie



Written by Ariane Cruz

Articles Published: 2014

Ariane Cruz, Senior Content Writer. She has been contributing articles for FandomWire since 2021, mostly covering stories about geek pop culture. With a degree in Communication Arts, she has an in-depth knowledge of print and broadcast journalism. Her other works can also be seen on Screen Rant and CBR.