Before superhero movies were everywhere, 20th Century Fox and Bryan Singer brought X-Men to theaters back in the year 2000. That franchise is still going strong today, with Dark Phoenix and The New Mutants set to arrive in theaters, despite Fox’s upcoming merger with Disney. But Fox has had some missteps along the way, including Josh Trank’s already infamous Fantastic Four movie. The comic book adaptation was a critical and financial flop, barely recouping its budget while being panned by audiences and critics alike.
While Fox has let the Deadpool franchise flourish and continued the main X-Men franchise, there is a certain flick that has sat in development hell for years: Channing Tatum’s Gambit movie. The fan favorite character’s solo movie has been pushed back a number of times, and the Fox/Disney merger makes its fate all the more precarious. Rupert Wyatt was poised to direct the project at one point, but he recently revealed that the failure of The Fantastic Four negatively affected the film’s potential budget. As he put it:
Superhero movies may be the most profitable genre in the film world, but they also require the biggest budgets. As such, each new release is a major gamble. Fantastic Four failed to perform at the box office, so it seems Fox kept its purse strings a bit tighter, and didn’t want to give Gambit the same type of cash money. Poor Remy Lebeau.
Ruper Wyatt’s comments to Comics Beat help to illuminate the myriad delays that have hit Gambit since the potential blockbuster was announced. Channing Tatum has been signed to the project since May of 2014, so moviegoers have been waiting quite a bit of time for the fan favorite X-Man to reappear on the silver screen. Wyatt isn’t the only director who has been attached to the project, as Doug Liman also left due to script concerns. The script was presumably being worked on, before the project’s development was put officially on hold.
It’s unclear if Disney has any interest in bringing Gambit into the MCU, with the House of Mouse expected to acquire the rival studio in a matter of weeks. This puts the fate of Gambit up in the air, as well as where/when exactly The New Mutants will be completed and released. This is a series of events the public has grown accustomed to, although The Fantastic Four‘s affect on Gambit‘s budget is an interesting development in the potential film’s story.
The next installment in Fox’s X-Men franchise will be Dark Phoenix on June 7th, and Gambit‘s release date was last set on March 13th, 2020. Be sure to check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.