Doug Liman is entering final talks to direct the Channing Tatum-starring Gambit film slated to be released in October 2016. The X-Men spinoff’s original director Rupert Wyatt departed the project due to “scheduling conflicts – although insiders claim creative differences – leaving Gambit director-less for a couple of months. After a desperate scramble to choose a replacement, Fox has finally found their man and according to The Hollywood Reporter, Liman is the last stages of negotiations to sit in the director’s chair.
Liman is no stranger to directing blockbuster action films as well as A-List stars having helmed The Bourne Identity (2002), Mr & Mrs Smith (2005) and Edge of Tomorrow (2014) which were all fairly successful with critics and at the box office. He recently wrapped production on the 1980s set drug cartel drama Mena starring Tom Cruise set for release in 2017.
With Gambit’s release date coming in less than a year, Liman is expected to start production very soon. He’ll collaborate with producers Simon Kinberg and Lauren Shuler Donner on the film with legendary comic book writer Chris Claremont penning the screenplay. Since Hugh Jackman is hanging up his claws in his last movie as Wolverine in 2017, it’s been suggested that Fox plan to make Gambit a key character in its extended X-Men franchise. If that’s the case, expect to see Tatum’s Gambit pop up in other X-Men films after his own.
At this point we only know about two cast members on board: Tatum in the lead role and Spectre’s Lea Seydoux starring as the love interest Bella Donna. With director Liman nearly locked in, there should be further casting and production announcements coming very soon.
The card-throwing Cajun mutant’s solo movie is one of eight comic book films to come out next year. As well as Gambit, 2016 sees the release of Deadpool (February 12), Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice (March 25), Captain America: Civil War (May 6), X-Men: Apocalypse (May 27), Suicide Squad (August 5), and finally Doctor Strange (November 4). Hopefully Gambit will contribute to what looks like will be a very very exciting year.
Gambit is set for release October 7 2016.