What Gambit's Scheduling Move Could Mean For Fox's X-Men/Deadpool Franchise

by Russ Burlingame

Channing Tatum - Gambit

Earlier today, it was revealed that Gambit no longer had a release date at 20th Century Fox.

This is different from a movie -- like Fantastic Four 2, for instance -- being removed from the schedule. In the case of Gambit, it seems likely it's either scheduling-related, or borne out of the success of Deadpool and the desire to link future X-Men films more closely to the blockbuster.

What could that mean?

While it's entirely possible one of the two as-yet-untitled, scheduled Marvel/Fox movies could turn out to be Gambit, it's equally likely that Fox could be preparing Deadpool 2 and X-Force, while reworking the Gambit script to play off of X-Force instead of the X-Men.

Why? Well, aside from the monumental financial success of Deadpool, there's another factor, as well: X-Men: Apocalypse marks the end of the contract for Jennifer Lawrence, who has expressed doubts about returning. There have been rumors that Bryan Singer may be done directing X-Men films, as well, and that has led to some fans questioning just how much commitment many of the key players have to the X-Men franchise beyond Apocalypse. Furthermore, the absence of Hugh Jackman will leave a void: how does the X-Men franchise look without Wolverine?

I have nothing to base this on, except a gut feeling and an observation of how these things so often work...but it seems entirely possible there's nothing wrong with Gambit, per se, but that the studio simply hopes to bring the character into the world of Deadpool and X-Force.

It's just a theory, but one that doesn't seem totally out of line with Marvel publishing a Gambit and Deadpool miniseries.

By Russ Burlingame

Russ Burlingame has been covering comics and pop culture since 1999. He has written for WIZARD: THE COMICS MAGAZINE, Comic Related, Newsarama, and more before settling in for the long haul at ComicBook.com back in 2011.