Fox’s Gambit spinoff — Channing Tatum’s sexy heist movie about X-Men‘s Gambit — has been in development seemingly forever, cycling through at least three directors who have walked away (Rupert Wyatt, then Doug Liman, then Gore Verbinski). Nonetheless, Tatum has been trying to get the movie made, and Fox still has it on the schedule. Now director Rupert Wyatt (Captive State, Rise of the Planet of the Apes) has explained why production on Gambit fell apart back in 2015.
In the past, Wyatt’s departure was chalked up to “scheduling difficulties” or to the studio wanting too much control. But, in an interview with Comics Beat, Wyatt revealed the real — and perhaps unsurprising — reason he left the project even though “Channing [Tatum] had a really, really wonderful idea for what that film could and should be.”
It all came down to Josh Trank’s Fantastic Four losing a bunch of money after an infamously difficult production, which led to Fox slashing the Gambit budget just before production would have started:
“We were close, I believe 10 weeks away. It simply came down to budget. There was not enough. You know all too well about the politics of the business. Fantastic Four had been released by Fox a month before and had not gone well for them, so our budget was slashed quite considerably. The inevitable, from my perspective was, ‘Well then we need to rewrite the script to tailor to our budget,’ but we were too close to a start date for Fox to really want to go there, so unfortunately, it just didn’t work out.”