X-MEN Producer Lauren Shuler Donner Says Channing Tatum Is Playing Gambit [UPDATED]

by     Posted 222 days ago

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Earlier this year, X-Men producer Lauren Shuler Donner said that she wanted to see the mutant Gambit back on screen, and she wanted Channing Tatum to play the role.  She explained that she was “dying to do a Gambit movie” with Tatum, and it was just a matter of getting the studio on board.  A month ago, Tatum said he had met with Donner and would love to play the role because he’s a huge fan of the character.  However, there was still the question of whether or not it would all come together.

Now it’s sounding like Tatum is officially signed on to play the card-slinging cajun.  Hit the jump for more. [Update: We've added new information after the jump.]

gambit-comicOn the red carpet for X-Men: Days of Future Past, Donner was asked by Total Film if Tatum was confirmed to play Gambit, and she said, “Yes.”  Donner then went on to explain why she saw Tatum as the popular character:

“Well you know he’s a rogue, Channing. He’s a rascal, just like Remy LeBeau, and he can handle the action, we all know that. He’s got a really good heart, because I know him personally, I did a movie with him. So I think he’ll be great, he’ll be great for Gambit, and he’s a southerner too, he’s not from New Orleans but he is a southerner and he understands that world, and you know Gambit loves New Orleans.”

But will this be for the Gambit standalone movie that Donner wanted?  If Tatum is really on board and Gambit is coming back, I think we’ll probably see him in X-Men: Apocalypse since Singer has said he wants to the character in the movie along with Nightcrawler.  If Tatum’s take on Gambit is popular with audiences, then a follow-up standalone movie is more likely. [Update: ScreenCrush says Tatum is not attached to Apocalypse, so right now it looks like he'll be in a stand-alone movie, possibly set for July 13, 2018.  Presumably, the character and/or Tatum's popularity will be big enough by then to carry his own superhero franchise]

2nd: Update: THR’s Borys Kit has tweeted the following:

Here’s the video of Donner talking about casting Tatum:

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  • Doug_101

    Good. This means he can’t be the replacement Wolverine as Jackman suggested in one interview. I’m sure Tatum will be fine as Gambit, but he was never one of my favorite X-Men anyway. Kitsch did a decent job with what he was given, but it’s clear the producers are out to wipe Origins and The Last Stand from the history books.

    • Royale With Cheese

      Too true. It’s a shame as well because Kitsch really did do a decent job as did Liev Schreiber.

      • Doug_101

        Oh, if Sabretooth is in this third Wolverine film, they HAVE to bring Schreiber back – erasing X-Men Origins be damned! He was great in the part.

  • Greyson

    Favorite Xmen when I was younger. I am happy with this….

  • http://www.collider.com/ DNAsplitter

    Interesting. I still found Kitsch’s performance one of the few highlights of X:Men Origins Wolverine. But because of John Carter and Battleship he’s been the link to box office poison so it makes sense to go with Tatum who’s on a hot streak. Hopefully he can pull some talent behind the scenes to help improve his odds. Hope they can find the right balance as a Gambit film is really exciting as he’s always been one of my favorite characters.

    • JBug

      I love Gambit, too. A part of me wishes they went full on Cajun, but I know that probably wouldn’t play well on screen. I thought Kitsch was great, also and think Tatum will pull it off. I doubt we’ll get the Rogue/Gambit romance, even though Tatum would be perfect at it. He could totally pull of the lover/fighter thing.

      • Grendal Sven

        “Full on cajun?” Dude, I’ve lived down here my entire life and have only met about 3 people who are “full on cajun.” None of them lived in New Orleans.

      • Action Movie Fanatix

        You doubt we will get a Rogue/Gambit romance? It would be creepy if we did. In this X-Men movie universe Gambit is about 30 years older than Rogue.

  • JBug

    I think Tatum is solid for Gambit. It’s too bad that he is a big star. This would have been great if it was one of his first roles.

  • JBug

    Singer is pulling for all of my favorite players in the X-Men universe: Gambit, Nightcrawler, a slow build up for Iceman. I hope he get’s the chance to redo Phoenix. He set that up perfectly and it stinks he never got to see it through.

  • The Destroyer

    A couple years ago, I would of said “HELL NO!” But I’ve been slowly warming up to Channing Tatum, so maybe he will be good. He does have a roguish smile.

    • The Destroyer

      And I think Foxcatcher is going to really turn some heads. Both he and Steve Carrel look phenomenal in it.

  • This Guy

    This is one of the few, if not only, times I’ve read a comment section where everyone either loves or is fine with casting. It’s a great feeling to see. Channing Tatum owes so much to 21 Jump Street. Because let’s be honest, we all hated him before it.

    • T

      Dude…you just read my mind. Ditto. Cannot dislike Tatum nowadays….

    • Daniel Ronczkowski

      The scene of him in This Is the End as the gimp…priceless.

    • Aquartertoseven

      Can’t see a Gambit movie doing well though, only Wolverine is strong enough to go solo. Fassbender too, but he’s better as part of an ensemble as in First Class. If Gambit isn’t even being introduced in Apocalypse, I can’t see how it would work and grab the viewers’ attention. I think Lauren Shuler Donner needs to get over her woman boner over Tatum and see sense here.

  • Grayden

    Four years down the road? I get that they’ll film in late 2016 into 2017, but still seems so far off. Wonder if they might do a back-to-back deal and include him in Apocalypse.

    • Doug_101

      Singer said he wanted him in Apocalypse. It has to be for that. Maybe no mention of the film because DOFP isn’t out yet.

  • Portage_Pirate

    Sorry, but I’m CAJUN and being a “southener” does not give creedence to knowing what our culture is about nor being able to act and sound like one. There are too many Hollywood “actors” that have brutilized the culture and accent over the years that I’m not looking forward to Tatums role. Why not do some research and get someone from the area in question? Too much effort I guess…

    • http://twitter.com/jaxlynnicole Jaclyn L.

      I couldn’t agree more! That was the problem with Kitsch as Gambit, he flipped in and out of a terrible Cajun accent and it just didn’t fly (not to mention he didn’t resemble the character…). I can’t see Tatum doing a convincing accent, at all. I wonder if it will be like Kevin Costner’s non-accent in Robin Hood, yikes. Gambit didn’t just love Nola, he WAS Nola.

    • http://twitter.com/jaxlynnicole Jaclyn L.

      I couldn’t agree more! That was the problem with Kitsch as Gambit, he flipped in and out of a terrible Cajun accent and it just didn’t fly (not to mention he didn’t resemble the character…). I can’t see Tatum doing a convincing accent, at all. I wonder if it will be like Kevin Costner’s non-accent in Robin Hood, yikes. Gambit didn’t just love Nola, he WAS Nola.

    • Grendal Sven

      I am from New Orleans and as much as I want to jump on the hate-wagon it’s just to damn early to know how it’s going to turn out, I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and see how it goes.

  • Someone

    Sad. Kitsch was good (even if the movie wasn’t) and he is a better actor than Tatum (who is hot and cute but CAN’T play).

  • jack

    fuck no. keep taylor kitsch!

  • MCP

    Damn this! Sad day to hear that he’s doing Gambit and the death of H.R. Giger as well, what a bummer day…

  • Redjester

    I will say this, he certainly looks the part. But I honestly would have been just as happy with Kitsch reprising his role. That guy gets way more flack than he deserves. It’s not his fault his movies bombed.

    • Katey

      As incredibly unfair as it may be, Kitsch is certifiable box office poison. NO WAY any studio greenlights a big-budget tentpole with him at the center.

      But careers in Hollywood have peaks and valleys. It just takes careful maneuvering. Look at Kevin Costner, he was a huge movie star and that ended. After a few years, a TV stint got him noticed again and has been in three big-budget films over the last year. I believe Kitsch is taking the right steps with a supporting role in Lone Survivor and the HBO aids-themed movie The Normal Heart.

    • Strong Enough

      Kitsch sucks

      • Redjester

        Solid actor, just chose some projects that really did lackluster at the box office that aided in the masses equating his name with “crappy.”

  • eternalozzie

    Channing is a very monotone one dimensional actor .. plus he looks nothing like Gambit … but oh well …

    • Redjester

      Really? You think Tatum looks nothing like Gambit? Considering I think he’s a dead ringer for Gambit, either you’re really bad with faces or I am.

      • eternalozzie

        Gambit is tall and lanky and Tatum is short and chunky

      • Redjester

        I was talking about facial structure, but you’re waaaay wrong regarding height as well. Channing Tatum is 6’1″ and Gambit is listed as being (wait for it…) 6’1″. Weight wise, Gambit is listed as 179 lbs whereas Channing Tatum is a chunky 181 lbs, so I guess it could be argued you have a case there, lol…

        Are you sure you’ve read the comics?

      • Redjester

        I should mention that Taylor Kitsch is listed as only 5’11″.

      • eternalozzie

        Gambit is tall and lanky and Tatum is short and chunky

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  • saywut

    Another asinine casting decision. I would have taken anyone…Jeremy Irvine… Daniel Gillies… I would have taken a dog over Tatum. And, Jupiter ascending looks like bad LARP.

  • saywut

    Another asinine casting decision. I would have taken anyone…Jeremy Irvine… Daniel Gillies… I would have taken a dog over Tatum. And, Jupiter ascending looks like bad LARP.

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