Director Doug Liman Reveals Why He Didn’t Bet On ‘Gambit’

Director Doug Liman reveals why he ultimately turned down the opportunity to direct Fox's troubled X-Men spin-off, Gambit.


Director Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity, Live, Die, Repeat: Edge of Tomorrow) has revealed the reason why he left the Gambit movie, which has languished in Development Hell for nearly an entire decade.

The hypothetical Gambit film has suffered a number of setbacks since it was re-announced back in 2014, including concerns about the film’s budget, the possibility of the movie’s star (Channing Tatum) dropping out, and two different directors leaving the project altogether. While promoting his action movie The Wall, Liman told LRM Online exactly why he decided to leave Gambit:

“I’m all about the script, and I just wasn’t feeling it… I’ve gotta connect to the script. On Bourne Identity, Matt Damon was always referring to himself as a ‘script whore,’ and I’m with Matt on that. It’s like, you feel the script, that’s everything. We make movies because we want to tell great stories. The Wall started with a contest Amazon ran, and Dwain’s script rose to the top, and then it got handed to me.”

In all honesty, Fox’s plans to do a Gambit spin-off so soon really didn’t make a whole lot of sense. The only place where audiences would have been familiarized with the character was the much-maligned X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which was made so long ago that people have likely blocked it out of their minds. (The same could be said for Deadpool, admittedly, but the difference there is that there was a clear demand for that movie.) The movie was originally planned to have been a spin-off of that film, which – again – would not have been the smartest decision, given that Fox was busy trying to right the course for the movie franchise. Given that there are rumors that Rogue will be rebooted into the X-Men series with Dark Phoenix, perhaps Gambit could make his long-awaited return to the franchise soon after that movie – and that would be a better launching point for a spin-off than a standalone tied to the least popular installment in the movie franchise ever could.

While it doesn’t look like Gambit will see the light of day anytime soon, Twentieth Century Fox is still planning to keep the X-Men franchise going with the intent to release three movies in 2018New Mutants on April 13, Deadpool 2 on June 29, and Dark Phoenix on November 2. Those dates will likely shift around a bit more between now and then. In addition, there are plans for an X-Force movie for an unspecified date, along with Deadpool 3. In the meantime, Liman is pursuing development of an adaptation of DC’s Justice League Dark entitled Dark Universe, and his latest film (The Wall) opens this Friday.

Source: LRM Online