While actress Thandiwe Newton’s starring role in the third installment of Magic Mike is in fact being recast, according to crew members on the film, it isn’t due to “family matters” as a spokesperson claimed.
This crew member said that Newton and Channing Tatum got into an “unimaginably vicious” argument over the Will Smith Oscars slap on the 11th day of filming Magic Mike’s Last Dance. Tatum then stormed off of the set, driving off in his car.
The crew member went on to say, “Channing Tatum is the producer and number one on set. Thandiwe Newton is the #2 star. But 11 days into shooting, and it’s all over.”
“They fell out over the debacle at the Oscars. I was on set. I watched her and watched him. They were in and out of the house where we were filming having this confrontation. It was a tense exchange of words, but suddenly it escalated.”
The crew member who witnessed the argument went on, saying, “Channing got into this car, and he disappeared.”
Tension ran high on the set after that, and Tatum has since refused to work with Newton, even after director Steven Soderbergh attempted to step in.
“After the row, he just went, ‘I am not working with her anymore.’ Him being a producer, it’s his movie, so she’s off the movie,” the witness said.
According to a report by Variety, Newton’s role will likely be taken on by actress Salma Hayek.
A spokesperson released a statement regarding the incident, continuing to claim that Newton left to handle “family matters.” The official report says, “Thandiwe Newton has made the difficult decision to step away from the production of Warner Bros. Pictures’ Magic Mike’s Last Dance to deal with family matters.”
Magic Mike’s Last Dance is set to air exclusively on HBO Max, with Reid Carolin, the screenwriter for the first two installments of Magic Mike, returning as screenwriter. The first two films grossed $300 million worldwide, and the series has generated stage productions in locations such as Las Vegas, London, Berlin, and Australia.