Matthew McConaughey is in the middle of his McConaissance right now, which means pretty much any role is his for the taking. That kind of thing sort of happens after you completely redefine your career from romantic comedy mainstay into an Academy Award winning artiste. With that sort of power comes the power to also do exactly the opposite, and from the looks of it we might have our first casualty of the post Dallas Buyer's Club era. Apologies folks as this news is going to hit below the belt for some of you, but Magic Mike XXL just isn't in the cards for Dallas.
The Playlist lead their story about the start of principal photography (with a mostly returning cast lead by Channing Tatum,) by telling us upfront that the star of Interstellar is not coming back to a role that more than definitely threw some extra fuel on the fire of his career.
Now while Matthew McConaughey isn't returing to Magic Mike XXL, the exact circumstance of his departure isn't mentioned in the article. So while the news says that McConaughey's days of stripping for money are done for now, it doesn't say whether it was a personal choice or just not in the script. It wouldn't be a surprise that either the plot (a "road trip" movie according to director Greg Jacobs,) scheduling constraints, or even budgeting constraints were one of the many valid reasons that this just isn't happening.
After all, Magic Mike was made on a $7 million budget; and Magic Mike XXL doesn't look like it's going to be a sharp departure from that figure, as Warner Bros had an extremely iffy summer this past year and needs all the capital it can shore up before the DC Cinematic Continuum goes into full swing. The smaller the budget, the more money the studio gets to throw into its coffers for such important expenditures as anger management coaches for Ben Affleck, hair gel for Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, and a generous supply of green socks for Scoot McNairy.
Of course, this is all assuming that Magic Mike XXL is a hit, which is an even hairier prospect now that one of its top marquee names is confirmed as not involved. The film still has a prerequisite amount of beefcake, with Channing Tatum, Matt Boemer, and Joe Manganiello all returning for another round of magic. But the deficiency of Matthew McConaughey might be enough to send some fans off to see other films of his that they might not automatically show up for.
We'll get to see McConaughnomics in action when Interstellar opens on November 7th. Magic Mike XXL has circled July 1, 2015, putting it dangerously close to Marvel's tiny superhero project. How will they stack up? There will be an exam on our findings, so take copious notes to prepare for not only the exam, but also the bonus question: "Will Paul Rudd's Ant-Man muscles help Marvel defeat Channing Tatum's abs?"