An executive producer and stage star of a Las Vegas musical has weighed in on Whitey Bulger’s death.
Typically, we should say, “So what?”
But this is no ordinary producer. He’s Michael Franzese, the inspiration and backer of “A Mob Story” at Plaza Las Vegas. He does speak from experience about how crime bosses meet their doom. Bulger, an former Boston crime boss and a so-called “rat” who became an FBI informant, was found dead in Tuesday just hours after he was transferred to a federal prison.
An inmate who was also a former Mafia hit man, Freddie Geas, is one of possibly two inmates thought to have participated in the beating that led to the 89-year-old Bulger’s death. An investigator said Geas hated informants, telling the Associated Press, “Freddy hated guys who abused women. Whitey was a rat who killed women. It’s probably that simple.”
Franzese, who on Halloween marked the 43rd anniversary of when he took the oath to become a “made” man in the Columbo family, said he had no direct dealings with Bulger. But he never liked the guy, invoking the name of the late New England mob underboss Gennaro “Jerry” Angiulo. Bulger specifically ratted on the New England outfit, a rival of his own Boston gang, when he became an FBI informant.
“Jerry Angiulo was a friend,” Franzese said in a text message Tuesday. “He talked to me about (killing) Whitey way back when.” The word “killing” is in parenthesis, as Franzese originally texted a pair of handgun emojis to make that point.
Franzese also posted on his Twitter page, “Apparently, Whitey Bulger’s murder was mob related. Surprised the feds put him in general population in max security prison. Guys doing life have nothing to lose. And they don’t like informants or guys that abuse women … His murder – no surprise!”
Franzese says such incidents could find their way into his appearances as narrator of “A Mob Story.” Conceivably, he could update the script to make those very same point he makes in social media. Franzese’s storytelling is a fascinating facet of the stage show, which is also filled with inspired musical number.
The ex-mob boss’s take on recent events — especially when they involve such controversial and uniformly loathed characters as Bulger — would keep the mob’s nefarious legacy alive.