X-MEN Producer Lauren Shuler Donner Wants Channing Tatum for GAMBIT Movie

     January 30, 2014

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I’ll always have a soft spot for Gambit.  I became an X-Men fan through the 90s TV series, and he was my favorite character.  I understand where his critics are coming from, but I still think he’s a lot of fun, and if I had to say one nice thing about X-Men Origins: Wolverine it would be that they didn’t ruin the card-flinging mutant.  Sadly, with Origins being the black sheep of the franchise, it seemed like Gambit was one-and-done.

However, producer Lauren Shuler Donner hasn’t given up on the character yet, and she sees a future for Gambit as a stand-alone movie.  And who does she want for the charming Cajun?  Channing Tatum.  Hit the jump for more.  For more X-Men news, click here for new details on X-Men: Days of Future Past and click here for new details on X-Men: Apocalypse.

gambit-comics-1Speaking to Empire, Donner said about the film:

“I’m dying to do a Gambit movie with Channing Tatum,” Shuler Donner reveals. “That doesn’t have to be a great big movie. It’s a thief in New Orleans, it’s a whole different story. He’s on board, and I have to get the studio on board. How can anyone resist Channing? He’s such a sweetheart.”

Post-21 Jump Street, it is very hard to resist Tatum.  And I like Donner’s thinking.  While Fox is obviously chasing Avengers by putting a heavy emphasis on superhero teams with X-Men: Days of Future Past and X-Men: Apocalypse, they should remember that Marvel’s engine is powered by stand-alone pictures.  There are hundreds of mutants, and they don’t all have to be together in one film.  While Deadpool will probably never get over its R-rated hurdle to reach a greenlight, there’s no reason a Gambit movie would need more than a PG-13 rating.

Usually, these “I want” stories aren’t worth reporting because desire is cheap; there has to be an actual possibility.  But it just so happened that while doing a press conference for White House Down last year, Tatum expressed his love for the character:

“I would like to play Gambit. Gambit’s my favourite. I’m from New Orleans, around that area. My dad’s from New Orleans, and I like to do a Cajun accent. I could do it for real.”

“No knock on Taylor Kitsch, though, ’cause I actually like his Gambit, but I’ve always lived around Cajun people. Gambit was always like the woman-loving, cigarette-smoking, drinking guy. He was the punk rock of all the superheroes. He’s a thief. He kind of rode the line.”

Now you can argue all day whether or not you think Channing Tatum would make a good Gambit, but we have no idea how the character would be written or how he would play him.  Personally, I hope that Donner, Tatum, and Fox can get on the same page, and then we’ll see where the project goes from there.

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