Now that he’s got an Oscar, is Matthew McConaughey too good to reprise his role in the ‘Magic Mike’ sequel?


Matthew McConaghey’s return in the “Magic Mike” sequel is still unconfirmed. (Photo by Claudette Barius)

What’s this about Matthew McConaughey not slathering on the baby oil for “Magic Mike XXL?”

New reports suggest that McConaughey, who won an Oscar this year for his performance in “Dallas Buyer’s Club,” may not be so keen to revisit the role of Dallas, the stripper elder statesman of “Magic Mike” who trained and groomed dancers in the various ways of separating hot-to-trot ladies from their dollars. It’s not that difficult, really, but it is something of an art.

Speaking with Dish Nation, comedian and actor Gabriel Iglesias, who confirmed he had signed on to do the sequel, told the host McConaughey’s return was not a guarantee.

“Word has it that Matthew’s probably not going to be involved in this one ’cause he worth a lot of money, that whole Oscar thing,” Iglesias said lightheartedly. “The nerve, right?”

Iglesias might have been joking, but he does have a point. The first “Magic Mike” was made for just $7 million, peanuts for a Hollywood blockbuster. McConaughey was offered more than twice that to star in “Magnum P.I.,” which he turned down. Much was made of the “McConnaissance” in the run-up to and during awards season, and with good reason. Everyone was fascinated by how the man who had been known for a string of roles playing put-upon, aw-shucks romantic types steered his career to interesting, meaty roles in “Bernie,” “Dallas Buyer’s Club,” “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “True Detective.” Short answer: he always had it in him; just go back and watch “A Time to Kill” again. But for a time, McConaughey was the romantic comedy guy, starring in not one but two (!) films with Kate Hudson: “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” and “Fool’s Gold.” Plus “The Wedding Planner,” “Failure to Launch” and “Ghosts of Girlfriends Past.”

This film image released by Warner Bros. shows Matthew McConaughey in a scene from "Magic Mike." (AP Photo/Warner Bros., Claudette Barius)
McConaghey as Dallas. (AP Photo/Warner Bros., Claudette Barius)

All right. (All right. All riiiiiight.) It’s perfectly easy to understand why, after McConaughey took such pains to successfully build up his cred as a Serious Actor, he might not be so thrilled to rejoin what Channing Tatum has hinted will be a much more light-hearted take than the first “Magic Mike” movie.

“This one will be a road trip movie,” Tatum told MTV. “Without giving a lot away, we don’t wanna make it a really serious, slice-of-life movie. We want to have reality in it, but we don’t want to make it some dark drama. There was some darkness in the last one that I think surprised people and shocked people. This one, we want there to be a lot of conflict and a lot of struggle, but we also want there to be a s—-ton of fun. A s—-ton of ridiculous stuff that you would never see in a movie, on the face of the Earth, ever again.”

Slash Film said even if he does return, it probably won’t be in quite as big a capacity. It’s probably not a huge deal if McConaughey doesn’t return; his character was more of a Mama Morton to the strippers of his club (minus the criminal element), but he did win an Independent Spirit Award for his portrayal of Dallas.

At any rate, “Magic Mike XXL” won’t be in theaters until next summer; filming is expected to start in the fall. But if the stripper story line is one you find especially compelling, it may be worth it to check out Tahir Jetter’s “Hard Times,” a Web series about a New York personal trainer who turns to stripping to pay his bills. The show is now running on Issa Rae‘s YouTube channel, and you can still catch up; the third episode was uploaded on Wednesday. Like “Magic Mike,” which is loosely based on star Tatum’s pre-Hollywood life as a stripper, “Hard Times” draws inspiration from Jetter’s experiences. You can watch the first episode below:

h/t /Film

Soraya Nadia McDonald covers arts, entertainment and culture for the Washington Post with a focus on race and gender issues.
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