Delayed X-Men Spinoff Gambit Might Be Getting Back On Track

Card luck.

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The much-delayed X-Men spinoff focusing on card-throwing mutant superhero Gambit might have a new director. It has been reported that Pirates of the Caribbean's Gore Verbinski is Fox's next choice to take over the project, which has already seen two directors exit before production could begin.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Verbinski is in talks with the studio to helm the movie. Verbinski directed the first three entries in the Pirates of the Caribbean series, as well the animated hit Rango, The Lone Ranger, and this year's thriller A Cure for Wellness.

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If Verbinski joins Gambit, he will become the third high-profile director to be attached to the movie. It was originally scheduled for release in October 2016, with Rise of the Planet of the Apes' Rupert Wyatt as director. He left the film in September 2015, citing scheduling conflicts. However, a story in Deadline at the time suggested that there had been ongoing disagreements over both the script and budget.

Bourne Identity director Doug Liman subsequently joined the movie, with production rescheduled for spring 2016. That also failed to commence, with the start date moved to end of the 2016 to allow time for further rewrites, and then to spring 2017, neither of which happened. Liman quit in August last year.

Last month, star Channing Tatum provided an update on the film's status. The actor explained that while the unusual nature of the project meant that it has met various obstacles, the success of R-rated X-Men movies Deadpool and Logan has ultimately helped its progress.

"I think we got lucky," he said. "We got hit with some setbacks, and it was all for a good reason. We were trying to do something completely different. We were trying to do something that this genre of movie hasn't seen before. We kept running into the same problems, and then Deadpool and Logan came through and kicked the doors down. Now we're really getting to do some of the things we've always wanted to do with the script--we've just sort of started over."

The card-throwing Gambit first appeared in a 1990 issue of The Uncanny X-Men. He appeared briefly in 2009's critically panned X-Men Origins: Wolverine, portrayed by Taylor Kitsch.

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