If all goes according to plan, 20th Century Fox will release three vastly different movies set within the X-Men universe next year, Deadpool (February 12, 2016), X-Men: Apocalypse (May 27, 2016) and Gambit (October 7, 2016). Both Deadpool and X-Men: Apocalypse are in post-production, but Gambit hasn't started shooting yet, since director Rupert Wyatt backed out of the project last month. Today we have a new report from Heroic Hollywood, which claims the studio has three contenders to replace Rupert Wyatt, Doug Liman (Edge of Tomorrow), Shane Black (Iron Man 3) and Joe Cornish (Attack the Block).
Of this trio of contenders, only Shane Black has experience directing in the superhero movie genre, having helmed Marvel's Iron Man 3. Joe Cornish did receive a story and screenplay credit for Marvel's Ant-Man, and he has been up for a number of high-profile directorial gigs such as Kong: Skull Island, but he hasn't directed a feature since his critically-acclaimed debut, Attack the Block. Doug Liman is coming off last year's Edge of Tomorrow, and he recently wrapped production on Mena, starring Tom Cruise.
At this point, it isn't clear if any of these filmmakers have emerged as a front runner, but it's possible that the studio could be making a decision soon. Principal photography was originally slated to begin this fall, but production has now been pushed to March of next year, making it highly unlikely that the studio will be able to keep its October 7, 2016 release date, although they haven't officially changed it, as of yet. If it does get pushed to 2017, it could give the studio a companion film to Wolverine 3, which is set for March 3, 2017 and has been confirmed as Hugh Jackman's final performance as the title mutant.
Channing Tatum has been attached to star as the title character for quite some time, with Léa Seydoux portraying the female lead, Belladonna Boudreaux. While no story details have been confirmed yet, in the Marvel Comics, Remy LeBeau (Channing Tatum) was Belladona Boudreax's first love. They had an arranged marriage to unite the Thieves Guild, which Remy was a part of, and the Assassin's Guild, which Belladonna's father was the leader of. The marriage never happened, as Remy was forced to flee New Orleans. Belladona went on to get her own super powers, the ability to shoot plasma blasts.
Joshua Zetumer (RoboCop) wrote the screenplay, based on a treatment by Gambit comic book creator Chris Claremont. Channing Tatum is also slated to produce alongside his producing partner Reid Carolin, Simon Kinberg and Lauren Shuler Donner. Which of these three directors is the right choice to take on Gambit? Let us know what you think, and stay tuned for more updates.