For a superhero project with one of the most charismatic performers currently working locked in to star, Gambit has had a hell of a time getting off the ground. The X-Men spinoff film was originally slated to get Rupert Wyatt in the director's chair, but after butting heads with the studio over the creative direction of the film, Wyatt unceremoniously parted ways with producer/star Channing Tatum and the film. In the wake of Wyatt’s departure, Fox has been scrambling to find a worthy replacement, reportedly sitting down for heated chats with Attack the Block’s Joe Cornish, Straight Outta Compton’s F. Gary Gray, and Iron Man 3’s Shane Black.

But the frontrunner was always Edge of Tomorrow helmer Doug Liman. Last month, reports surfaced that Chan-Tates was specifically courting the filmmaker to take the lead on the film, but no ink had yet been committed to any contracts. Today, The Hollywood Reporter brings new notice that Liman has all but committed to Gambit, having entered “final negotiations” to direct after “several meetings.”

The studio has no time to lose, with the projected October 7, 2016 release inching closer and closer with every passing day. It’s in their best interest to get a good director and fast if they want to turn this around to meet their scheduled goals.

The award-winning filmmaker (declared the recipient of MTV’s Best New Filmmaker Award for his work on Swingers) has plenty of experience in the world of action, having already launched the Bourne franchise and spun box-office gold from Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt’s sexual chemistry in Mr. and Mrs. Smith. 

But this will be his greatest challenge yet. A hurried shoot, looming deadlines, the possibility of a full franchise at stake — if Liman does sign on the dotted line, he’ll have his work cut out for him.