Already making his mark behind the camera, producing both the 21 Jump Street and Magic Mike franchises, as well as co-writing the sequel for the latter, Channing Tatum’s next creative step will see him co-directing the film adaptation of Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock, THR reports. Based on the YA novel by Matthew Quick– of Silver Linings Playbook fame– the story will follow a high school student looking to end his troubles by killing his best friend and then himself.
It is likely that Tatum will also star in the film, possibly as a concerned teacher who steps in to intervene. Tatum’s frequent producing and writing collaborator, Reid Carolin (Magic Mike), will also make his directorial debut right alongside the actor. The adaptation is being backed by The Weinstein Co.’s Free Association label and is currently fielding screenwriters.
Fresh off his recent and burgeoning success with this year’s Foxcatcher, Tatum has been making a name for himself as a Renaissance man throughout the film industry. In addition to over a dozen films he has in various stages of production, Tatum will continue building his reputation as a franchise heavy hitter, by putting out Magic Mike XXL next year, with 23 Jump Street currently being developed, and a possible role as Gambit in the next installment of the X-Men Universe. Up Ahead, he also will be releasing Jupiter Ascending, co-starring Mila Kunis (Friends with Benefits), as well as appearing in the next Coen Brothers project Hail, Caesar! and in Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight.
Taking on directorial duties is a smart move for Tatum. The combination of Quick’s popularity in the film industry (Sam Raimi is also directing the adaptation of his novel Love May Fail,) along with the measurable success of YA dramas (i.e. The Fault in Our Stars), Tatum has all the elements for a possible home run.