By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist September 17, 2012 at 4:02PM
We're sure that someone out there has had a better year than Channing Tatum. An Olympian who won multiple gold medals, for instance. Or someone who won nine figures in some kind of lottery. Or maybe the "Gangnam Style" guy. But in the film world, no one's had a better 2012 than Tatum. Somewhat mocked by many in years gone by, the actor kicked off the year by impressing in Steven Soderbergh's "Haywire," before having three $100 million+ smash hits in five months, in the shape of romantic drama "The Vow," acclaimed comedy "21 Jump Street" and Soderbergh's "Magic Mike," which Tatum also produced, and based on his own life. Wildly different films, but Tatum impressed in each, and has gone from a nearly-man to one of the most in-demand leading men around.
The actor's latest picture, "10 Years" (another producing effort) hits theaters this week, but he's made clear his ambitions don't end with acting and producing, as it was recently reported that the star was mulling making his directorial debut, alongside producing partner/screenwriter Reid Carolin, on a sequel to "Magic Mike," seeing as Soderbergh's now unavailable. Now, Vulture talked to Tatum recently, and the star confirmed he's interested in the possibility, but isn't going to jump right in.
"We've thought about directing 'Magic Mike 2'," Tatum told the site, "and we're still thinking about it, and we want to do that. We want to do the sequel. It's too good of a movie, and the characters are so crazy, that we want to go for it. We feel like we did the little indie version this last time, and for the next one, we want to up the stakes a little, maybe go even farther." But the actor also says that he's not planning on making it his first film behind the camera, suggesting he might take on a smaller-scale project (perhaps something closer to "10 Years?") first. "Reid and I aren't idiots! We're not going to direct our first movie as a sequel to a Steven Soderbergh movie. That's not smart. I want to start with something very small ... make a lot of mistakes, make them real early, and then go jump in [on the sequel]."
Showing that he's a lot smarter than his most frequent screen persona, Tatum says he wouldn't ape Soderbergh (who's now retiring from filmmaking, at least for the moment), and would try to find his own approach to a possible sequel. "We'll never be able to copy Soderbergh." He told Vulture. "No one can. Even if you tried to copy him, you can't, because it's always going to be a reflection of yourself. It's like love. If you understand love, if you're in love, you'll put your version of love into the movie." We remain a little ambivalent about the idea of a sequel to a film like "Magic Mike," much as we loved the original, but it sounds like it's still quite a ways off, and we at least have some faith that Tatum isn't going to make some hack-y cash in. We hope, anyway...