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Just when we thought that things had started to level off in the X-Men universe, it seems that one of the franchise's most rocky projects has hit yet another snag. Remember Gambit? Well, it now it appears that the film has once again lost its director, as Gore Verbinksi has officially dropped out of the film.
Despite a few months of significant developments on the Gambit front, this obviously represents a massive setback for the film. Gore Verbinski signed on to the X-Men spinoff in October, which led to a series of subsequent casting rumors and potential plotlines surfacing online. However, as of today, Verbinksi has officially dropped out of the project due to scheduling conflicts. Gambit was supposedly going to begin shooting in February, but it seems safe to assume that's no longer going to happen with the director out of the picture.
The Deadline report confirming Gore Verbinksi's exit from Gambit also mentions that the split with 20th Century Fox has been "amicable," as the A Cure For Wellness director just could not remain onboard Gambit because of his own schedule. This feels somewhat different from the similar departure of Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman, who claimed to leave Gambit because he was not able to forge a meaningful connection with the story's material. Based on that rationale, it doesn't sound like there was any ill-will between Verbinski and the studio; it was just a matter of timing.
One thing worth noting about Gambit losing its director is how the potential X-Men offshoot could be affected by the recent $52 billion Disney-Fox merger. Rumors related to the landmark business deal have suggested that projects currently in development will be placed under review and kept or dropped on a case-by-case basis, depending on their success and progress. Gambit is far behind finished films like New Mutants and Deadpool 2, but it also seems to be further through development than something like the rumored X-23 spinoff. Losing Gore Verbinksi sets Gambit back by several vital steps, and the next few months will likely prove interesting as we learn more about its fate.
Even without Gore Verbinksi's involvement, the Gambit movie is still shaping up as one of the X-Men franchise's more unique projects -- if it ever actually gets made, that is. The film is rumored to be a heist movie set in New Orleans during Mardi Gras, with the titular mutant (played by Channing Tatum, who has remained attached to the project through all of the drama) being hired by Mister Sinister to steal a chest from the Thieves Guild. It's an interesting concept, but we will just have to wait and see what (if anything) comes of it.
CinemaBlend will bring you more information on this bizarre Gambit situation as new details become available to us. The film remains locked in place for its February 14, 2019 release date, but we will keep you posted if that changes. Looking through the rest of this year's biggest movies, you can take a look at our 2018 movie premiere guide to see what's on the horizon!