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Universal Moves Forward With Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Channing Tatum’s R-Rated Musical

Hail Caesar Channing Tatum
Universal Pictures

Last February, it was announced that Universal Pictures had won a bidding war for an untitled R-rated musical comedy written by Joseph Gordon-Levitt and the screenwriter behind 21 Jump Street. While little was known about the film at the time, Variety reported that Godon-Levitt had also enlisted Channing Tatum  —  noted dancer and Professional Handsome Man  —  to co-star with him in the film. Since that announcement, things were pretty quiet about the project until just this past week, where suddenly a flurry of updates were released by Universal Pictures.

According to Variety (via ComingSoon.net), not only is the project still very much alive, it’s also moving forward with Gordon-Levitt as the both co-star and director. The film, now featuring the working title Wingmen, will follow two pilots after they crash land in Las Vegas. Variety notes that the film has been pitched as a musical in the vein of Pitch Perfect or The Book of Mormon, with the soundtrack featuring “Top 100 hits with a touch of adult humor.”

Fans of the Step Up or Magic Mike films  —  or, perhaps more recently, the Coen BrothersHail, Caesar!  —  will know that Tatum is no stranger to either classical Hollywood softshoe or modern dance. Since Tatum has effectively retired from both franchises, Wingmen should fill that musical-shaped hole in the hearts of all Tatum fans out there. Gordon-Levitt is less of a known quanitty, but his enthusiastic performance of ‘Make ’Em Laugh’ from Singing in the Rain on a 2014 episode of Saturday Night Live prove he’s got the chops. If the success of La La Land means that Hollywood is going to double-down on musicals for a period, here’s hoping that they start with smart scripts like Wingmen before churning out their own musical fluff.

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