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Channing Tatum reveals the reasons that took him away from Hollywood for five years | Movies

Channing Tatum hasn’t starred in a movie since 2017’s Logan Lucky. It’s a disconcerting break for one of Hollywood’s biggest stars: an actor who has funny, goofy and sometimes shirtless redefined male movie stardom.

His five-year hiatus ended this week with the release of Dog, in which he plays Briggs, a US Army Ranger, who brings a fallen soldier’s dog to his funeral. He will next follow the comedy The Lost City opposite Sandra Bullock.

But returning to the spotlight, he says he never really intended to disappear: “I didn’t walk away thinking, ‘I’m out of here.'”

In recent years, Tatum has premiered the Magic Mike Live road show and penned a children’s book inspired by his eight-year-old daughter, Everly. In 2018, he and his wife Jenna Dewan, whom he met on the set of 2006’s Step Up, reported their separation after nine years. Meanwhile, Tatum had fleeting appearances on screen, did a handful of cameos and voice overs.

“Time just slipped away… Really, being a father dragged me along for almost four years. I got a little lost doing that,” she admitted.

“I acted for almost ten years and I needed to take a step back… My career was my whole life. It was all about what I was going to do with my career,” she maintained.

He debuts as a director and Gambit still hurts

Dog, the directorial debut for Tatum and longtime producing partner Reid Carolin, was a way to re-make the kind of movie that got them excited about cinema in the first place. Like the Magic Mike tapes Carolin wrote, Briggs’ road trip encounters constitute an American odyssey that navigates polarized views on patriotism and politics.

“I didn’t want to just get into someone else’s movie… We wanted the next thing we did to be our story, not do something just because we could,” the actor said.

Tatum and Carolin spent years developing a Marvel project that ultimately never happened. His Gambit, which was to be adjacent to the X-Men movie, was one of the most high-profile casualties of Walt Disney Co.’s acquisition of 20th Century Fox.

“When ‘Gambit’ was falling apart, I remember Chan pulling a chair across the room. We were looking at each other as if to say, ‘I can’t believe we spent two years on this.’ Caroline revealed.

The loss of Gambit still hurts. “I mean, the amount of time and sweat and tears,” Tatum recounted, shaking his head. They had envisioned great action sequences, shot scenes and designed the entire world of the film, Carolin noted.

“We won’t know what could have been unless Marvel calls us and says, ‘Hey, would you be interested in picking this up again?'” Tatum said.

After spending so much time preparing for something that never materialized, the duo wanted to launch into making a movie on their own terms, with much of the same independently funded team and business model as their Magic Mike series of films. Gregory Jacobs, who directed Magic Mike XXL, is a producer. Sure enough, they got the band back together.

“We thought, ‘We have to be able to go out and do something.’ We reflected on the Magic Mike experience, where we didn’t have anyone looking over his shoulder. No one was saying, ‘You can’t do this, you can’t do that,’” Carolin reflected.

Tatum and Carolin met in Kimberly Peirce’s 2008 film Stop-Loss, about post-traumatic stress disorder and Iraq War soldiers, and have since done other stories about American war veterans; were executive producers of the 2017 HBO documentary War Dog: A Soldier’s Best Friend.

Dog’s origins are based on Tatum’s own experience on a trip to Southern California with a dog named Lulu, like Dog’s, shortly before she died of cancer. In Dog, her link is expanded as a commentary on post-war veterans’ lives.

“A lot of times when you make movies about soldiers, they are archetypally typecast as heroes or broken people who need healing. We really didn’t want to veer off in any of those directions,” Carolin explained.

Dog is the relatively rare Hollywood movie that can appeal to both the so-called Midwest and the Coasts, but Tatum — who grew up in Alabama and Mississippi — cringes at the idea of ​​targeting any segment of moviegoers.

Magic Mike’s empire has also proven to be remarkably universal. After the first two films grossed more than $300 million at the worldwide box office, Magic Mike Live—a live show that premiered in Las Vegas—has been shown in London, Berlin and Australia. A North American tour will kick off on April 6 in Nashville, Tennessee.

Last dance for Magic Mike

Tatum says that after Steven Soderbergh saw the show live, he encouraged him and Carolin to develop a third film. Directed by Soderbergh and written by Carolin, Magic Mike’s Last Dance is made for HBO Max. Tatum has promised that “the universe of nude dancers will never be the same again.”

Visibly excited about the film, Tatum and Carolin compare it to All That Jazz and Pretty Woman. Tatum — whose girlfriend, Zoë Kravitz, stars in Soderbergh’s Kimi — said that after two movies “about men, for women,” the third will have an actress as or more leading role than Mike’s character.

With the film he aspires to “break with the traditional stuff of those movies and really do the Super Bowl of stripper movies, where the dancing is at the next level, where I hope male entertainment or striptease goes. It doesn’t have to be boring, it can be great.”

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