*UPDATE: Alex Pettyfer to play character based on Channing Tatum’s stripper days

UPDATE – THR reports; Alex Pettyfer will star in the lead role in Magic Mike, a character based on the real life experiences of Channing Tatum, who was a stripper at age 18, making ends meet while pursuing an acting and modeling career. Tatum (31) will appear in the film as a “mentor” to the 21-year-old Pettyfer. The comedy directed by Soderbergh wil start production this August in Los Angeles.

See our original article posted May 04,2011 Below:

Cancel that retirement: Soderbergh takes on Liberace, a deadly virus, and male strippers.

Director Steven Soderbergh recently set shockwaves through the blogosphere with the news that he was contemplating retirement. Well, never mind. The Oscar-winning director of “Traffic,” “Erin Brockovich” and the “Ocean’s 11” trilogy, among many others, has two films set to premiere soon. Two additional pictures include a George Clooney actioner based on a classic TV series, and a Liberace biopic. And then there’s that Channing Tatum stripper picture…?

Channing Tatum posing in GQ
Channing Tatum posing in GQ

That’s right: One of Hollywood’s most revered auteurs is considering a film based on the hunky young star’s past as a stripper. He would play an older, more seasoned exotic dancer who mentors a young up-and-comer to the world of G-strings as they juggle partying, women and adulation.

Alex Pettyfer

“When Channing talked to me about this, I thought it was one of the best ideas I’d ever heard for a movie,” Soderbergh announced last week, as reported by Deadline.com. “I said I wanted in immediately. It’s sexy, funny and shocking. We’re using Saturday Night Fever‘ as our model, so hopefully we’re on the right track.”


That ’70s classic starred a lithe, seductive John Travolta and packed a killer soundtrack. So who knows? If anyone can fashion a stripper movie starring Channing Tatum into a piece of entertainment, it’s Soderbergh.

Oh, and the title? “Magic Mike.” (If this is all a joke, everyone involved is admirably committed to the gag.)

Tatum is currently shooting a big screen version of “21 Jump Street,” and has romantic drama “The Vow” costarring Rachel MacAdams coming up later this year.

Soderberg’s next films include the action-adventure “Haywire” starring mixed martial arts star Gina Carano opposite Tatum, Antonio Banderas, Michael Douglas and Ewan McGregor. Then he’s got a dramatic thriller titled “Contagion” about the outbreak of a deadly virus starring the prolific Matt Damon with an A-list supporting cast that includes Marion Cotillard, Laurence Fishburne, Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow and Kate Winslet.

The Liberace picture will star Douglas as the flamboyant, sequined piano genius with Damon playing his younger lover. Clooney is eyeing a big-budget remake of the classic TV spy series “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Deadline.com didn’t take Soderbergh’s announced retirement too seriously. “He’s following the Brett Favre playbook. That starts with a tearful retirement announcement, and an eventual return whenever a good offer or boredom sets in,” they wrote. “Since Soderbergh doesn’t have to worry about being face-planted into the turf by 300-pound defensive linemen, he can retire and un-retire into his 70s.”

Snarked the Huffington Post: “When you have to make a choice between early retirement and making a movie about a male stripper, starring a male stripper, the decision is easy: male stripper movie.”

CLICK HERE for the full Deadline.com story.

Click HERE for THR report.

Click HERE for more BNH stuff on ALEX PETTYFER

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