Remember when Channing Tatum was, like, this close to playing Gambit, the famous X-Men character? Looks like he’s got his sights set on making another comic book movie happen — one a little more off the beaten path. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Tatum will, alongside producing partner Roy Lee (Doctor Sleep), bring a movie version of cult comic The Maxx to the big screen.
The Maxx, created in 1993 by Sam Kieth for Image Comics, tells two narratives simultaneously. In the real world, its title character is a suffering homeless man with a social worker named Julie Winters. But in “The Outback,” the Maxx is a powerful, protective figure, and Julie is his Jungle Queen. The comic series was originally adapted for TV in a ’90s MTV animated series of the same name, where it quickly earned a cult following for its bizarre, shifting animation style.
While details are scant about Tatum and Lee’s take on the material, it definitely sounds like more of a darker, grown-up version of comic book narratives — less MCU, more Joker, down to its examination of mental illness. At the moment, Tatum is just announced as a producer. Will he also be interested in playing the Maxx? Has Joaquin Phoenix tempted him to get his own critically acclaimed comic book role? Time will tell, but no matter what, this version of The Maxx is on our radar.
For more on Tatum’s upcoming projects, here’s our look at the unorthodox road movie Dog and his return to straight drama Soundtrack of Silence. And if you want more stuff like The Maxx, check out the 30 best comic book cartoons of the 1990s.