The movie’s theatrical release was limited because its distributors felt it would be inappropriate give it widespread distribution in the wake of the Columbine High School massacre in Colorado, which led to increased scrutiny of violence in the media. Since being released on DVD however, “Boondock” has found a large and loyal following of fans who can quote every line of the film and who have been after Duffy for years to make a sequel. Their efforts were successful and the eagerly awaited follow-up, “The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day,” is set to open Oct. 30.
“It happened the way it happened and, frankly, I wouldn’t change it if I could,” Duffy recently told the Irish Echo about the fate of the first “Boondock.” “Very few writer-directors get in that little [cult classic] club and now I’m a member. But while it was happening, it was . . . kind of depressing. But, now that it’s happened, it’s success in a whole different way.”
Both “Boondock Saints” films follow justice-seeking, Irish-American brothers Connor and Murphy MacManus (played by Sean Patrick Flannery and Norman Reedus) as they take down Russian mobsters and other assorted bad guys in South Boston after receiving what they believe to be a message from God. Scottish comedian Billy Connolly plays their hit-man dad, Noah “Il Duce” MacManus, while Clifton Collins Jr. joins the cast this time around as the boys’ sidekick, Romeo, and Julie Benz plays Eunice, the cop investigating the crimes the MacManus family perpetrates. The sequel, which retains the energy and darkly comic spirit of the original, picks up as the brothers — who wear Rosary beads and say prayers in Latin when they kill people — leave Ireland where they have been hiding out and head back to Boston to finish some business.
“The fans got it made — they’re what made the first film successful and they got the second one made,” Duffy said. “What they noticed in the movie business was that ‘Boondock’s’ numbers every year kept getting bigger and bigger, and the fan base kept growing and growing . It’s supposed to happen the other way. You go out and exploit something and you have something that starts to wane after three to six months on the shelves . . . ‘Boondock’ was exactly the opposite. Because of the Columbine incident, we were basically blacklisted from U.S. theaters.”
So, what was it like getting the gang together again a decade later for a sequel?
“We never really were apart,” Duffy replied. “We were talking any way and they would always inquire as to how [the script for the follow-up] was coming. So once the screenplay got done . . . it was a matter of a phone call.”
“It was a little d