Twentieth Century Fox and producer Simon Kinberg are set with an arsenal of Marvel-minded films. The Fantastic Four reboot is in its marketing stages, and shooting for X-Men: Apocalypse and Deadpool has started simultaneously. Add to that talk of Wolverine 3 and New Mutants, it may be hard for fans to keep up. It’s important, however, not to let one name get caught in the shuffle– Remy LeBeau, aka Gambit.
Gambit, the card wheelin’ Cajun is set to be played by Channing Tatum. Much like Ryan Reynolds with Deadpool, producer Lauren Schuler Donner will back Gambit’s character movie/reboot. Both characters (Deadpool and Gambit) had rather botched entrances into the Cinematic Marvel Universe in 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and are receiving much-needed do-overs.
When Tatum talked to Empire Magazine about the film, which is set to hit theaters October 2016, he shared what it is about the charismatic womanizer from the comics that he identifies with.
“I love Gambit. I grew up in the South; my father’s from Louisiana. We’d go to New Orleans and I heard all the dialects. It felt so different from the rest of America; it has its own ancient culture. So I identified with that. And he always felt the most real of the X-Men to me. He’s kind of a tortured soul and he’s not a good guy. But he’s not a bad guy, either. He walks his own path. And of course he plays cards and drinks and is a martial-arts badass!”
Josh Zetumer (RoboCop) was brought in by FOX in October to pen the screenplay, and has already completed one script draft for Gambit. Here’s what Tatum had to say about that:
“Josh Zetumer just turned in the first draft of the script, and it’s killer. None of us were sure how he was going to deal with the X-Men world. But we’re going to be changing some of the tropes of these movies. It’s always about saving the world (Laughs), but maybe we’re going to shift things a liittle but. There’s so many ways you can take [an origin story]. You could do it like Batman Begins, or a different take and go the Guardians of the Galaxy route. All I can say is, I’m super excited.”
Timing will play a bit of an issue here, as it raises the question of where, continuity wise, Gambit’s origin story could fit into the X-Men movie series. We were first introduced to Taylor Kitsch as Remy LeBeau in the late 80’s/early 90’s; when X-Men:Wolverine took place. Only time will tell how this issue will be dealt with, whether it’ll dip a little into the past, or, like Deadpool, be set in modern times.
X-Men: Apocalypse being set primarily in 1983 makes for some tricky story-weaving in these newer projects. The answer may be in time travel. The conditions that X-Men: Days of Future Past left the world in must be taken into account: where mutants are now feared.
Tatum, for one, doesn’t seem too concerned about these details being tied up. The excitement he feels for the film is palpable from his interview snippets- October can’t get here soon enough!
Fantastic Four hits theaters August 7, 2015, Deadpool hits February 12, 2016, X-Men:Apocalypse hits May 27, 2016, Gambit hits October 7, 2016, the unofficially titled ‘Wolverine 3’ hits March 3, 2017, Fantastic Four 2 hits June 9, 2017, and an upcoming X-Men film hits July 13, 2018.