The Pirates of the Caribbean star will reportedly portray late Los Angeles police detective Russell Poole, who attempted to solve the murders of rappers Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls, and Whitaker has signed on to play a journalist who teams up with Depp's character to uncover the truth.

Poole discovered corruption within the L.A. police department while investigating the deaths of the rap icons. Poole retired from the police force in 1999 and set up his own detective agency. He died of an apparent heart attack last year (15) while discussing the Tupac and Biggie cases at the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department for a book he was working on.

Upon his retirement, Poole filed a lawsuit against the LAPD for violating his First Amendment rights by preventing him from going to the public with his information surrounding the Notorious B.I.G. and Tupac murders.

In addition to the film, a scripted true crime TV series, titled Unsolved will expose details of the two police investigations. The project has been picked up by bosses at U.S. cable channel USA Network.

The series is based on the experiences of former Los Angeles police detective Greg Kading, who will consult on the script and serve as co-executive producer. Kading wrote the book Murder Rap: The Untold Story of Biggie Smalls & Tupac Shakur Murder Investigations.

Depp and Whitaker's film will be based on Randall Sullivan's book Labyrinth.