When Fox finally greenlit the Ryan Reynolds-championed Deadpool, it seems like it mostly wanted the project to go away. The studio threw less than $60 million at the project. Now, the long-awaited Gambit film is about to start production, and the soon-to-be-Disney-owned project seems to be suffering from a case of overcorrection.
Channing Tatum’s take on the Ragin’ Cajun is set to start filming on location in Louisiana in March 2018 with a $155 million budget.
One-hundred and fifty five million. On its own, that number isn’t that big for a movie these days. Let’s put it in context, though.
Iron Man 3, a movie laden from end to end with special effects including flying robots and exploding people, squeaked in at just over $200 million. Star Wars: The Force Awakens had an estimated production budget of $245 million. Deadpool‘s budget hit $58 million and Logan was still under $100 million even after accounting for Hugh Jackman’s extensive hair product needs.
Gambit‘s VFX needs would seem to hover somewhere around those two movies. Gambit is a thief and fighter, with the rather simple power of being able to charge objects with explosive energy. His effects needs don’t seem to differ much from those of a rather intense Deadpool fight sequence. With that in mind, it’s hard to imagine just where the rest of the money is going.
Right now it seems like a case of sharp overcorrection. Deadpool and Logan were experiments that proved successful beyond anyone’s expectations. Letting star-led creative ventures run their course is proving profitable for the X-Men universe. That Fox would want to ensure its next project is profitable only makes sense.
If anything, this makes me more curious to see where Channing Tatum and crew take the X-Men’s shadiest and most charismatic character. But just a little concerned as to what Fox (and soon Disney) actually expect from the movie. We’ll find out when Gambit hits theaters on Valentine’s Day 2019.