The X-Men series of films at what was 20th Century Fox came to an end with The New Mutants in 2020, and before Disney got control of the characters, one of the most famous in-development projects was Channing Tatum’s Gambit.
The mutant – also known as Remy LeBeau – came close to being in earlier films in the series. At one point, now-disgraced director Bryan Singer looked at Keanu Reeves for the part, but these plans were ultimately scuttled.
Taylor Kitsch played the role in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, before Tatum came on board in 2014. Gambit languished in development hell for years, though, but the spinoff was only a few months away from shooting when Disney scrapped it in 2019, as producer Reid Carolin revealed in a new interview.
In an interview with The Playlist, Tatum’s creative partner said the story unfolded in New Orleans and followed a group of mutants more concerned with daily life than saving the world. Audiences would have gotten a taste of how gangsters operate with these kinds of abilities, with Carolin offering a tantalizing reference to an all-time classic.
“They went [to the city] so they could use their powers to party and hook up. Their hands could fry the grease at McDonald’s and whatever else and the hardest thing for them to do was fall in love because they could read each other’s minds. Or when they got into a fight they could turn a table into a grenade and send their partner to the hospital or whatever. So it was all this kind of low-level fights and in this world of the Mafia – almost kind of like a mutant Goodfellas in New Orleans.
While Tatum has said in recent interviews he was crushed by the collapse of the production, he and Carolin are still open to pursuing the idea if the Marvel Cinematic Universe team is interested