Gambit is one of the most popular characters from the X-Men comics, but the manipulator of kinetic energy also known as Remy Etienne LeBeau has rarely been featured in film. Taylor Kitsch played the mutant in X-Men Origins: Wolverine in 2009, but he got a disappointing amount of screen time in the much-slated picture from Gavin Hood.
Now that Disney owns Fox, the X-Men and their related associates and enemies are beginning to be integrated into the MCU. Filmmakers have been attempting to make a standalone Gambit movie for years, and it could be the perfect time for a gritty offering about the character.
Tatum Has Long Been Linked With the Role
After the release of Hood’s film, there was talk about exploring the backstory of other characters in the X-Men universe. For years, Channing Tatum was linked with the role of Gambit. This was reported in 2014, but the offering went through five years of development hell and was ultimately canceled in 2019. However, most of this turmoil occurred before Disney’s acquisition of Fox, so the situation may have changed. Tatum is still keen on playing the mutant and has even offered to direct the film in an effort to push it through.
Gambit is one of the most famous unproduced superhero films of all time, and the movie had a script from Josh Zetumer, as well as several big-name directors who were signed on to oversee production at different stages. These included Rupert Wyatt, Doug Liman, and Gore Verbinski. These Hollywood giants confessed that there were several problems with the project. Verbinski complained that the studio was trying to rush him into production and that the budget was slashed midway through.
Gambit is a Character That All Viewers Can Relate to
There’s no doubt that Gambit is one of the fan favorites among comic book readers, but that’s not the only reason why Kevin Feige should be interested in integrating him into the MCU. He has attributes that can help him appeal to a mass audience worldwide and could help Marvel gain more followers in some of its weaker markets.
The MCU has famously found it difficult to break into the Middle East and recreate the same success there as it has in the west. But a character like Gambit could be the link that the studio needs to boost its viewing figures. The mutant is known for being able to manipulate a deck of cards, and can often be found playing poker. The popular table game could easily be incorporated into his story, with this being the way the character was introduced in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
Poker is something that Arabic viewers can relate to, as the card game has recently broken into the region and is beginning to boom there. There are now so many sites marketing themselves to players in the Middle East that these people turn to experts to help them find the best Arabic online poker sites. Players can find a rundown of all the sites, along with an explanation about the different bonuses and promotions. There are even details about the different forms of poker, from Texas Hold’em to Omaha. Review pages like this highlight how seriously Arabians take poker, suggesting that they would be fond of seeing a character like Gambit taking on players at the felt on the silver screen.
MCU Has a History of Turning Lesser-Known Characters into Greats
If anyone can do Gambit’s character justice and turn him into a household name, it’s Marvel. For more than two decades, the MCU has transformed several non-mainstream superheroes into legends of the genre.
Iron Man is a prime example of this. While Tony Stark may have been well known among comic book fans before the release of Jon Favreau’s Iron Man in 2008, the average cinemagoer was unaware of him. The hero was nowhere near the notoriety of Batman and Superman, and he wasn’t even considered among Marvel’s A-listers, who most would agree were the Hulk, the X-Men, and Spider-Man.
Now, though, Iron Man is one of the most famous superheroes on the planet, thanks to some excellent films and incredible performances from Robert Downey Jr. The same thing could easily happen with Gambit, and comic book readers would love to see the character portrayed on the big screen. Indeed, rather than try to replace notorious greats from the past X-Men films, such as Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, Marvel could turn to characters like Gambit as the new leads of the franchise.
With the X-Men coming to the MCU, it’s highly likely that there will finally be a Gambit film that can do the character justice. If it happens within the next few years, there’s a good chance that Tatum will take on the role he’s been desperate for since 2014.