He plays a male stripper in upcoming beefcake bonanza Magic Mike, and for his next big screen outing, Channing Tatum will need to be just as ballsy.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the actor is in talks with Columbia Pictures to star in and produce a movie about late legendary daredevil Evel Knievel.

Born Robert Craig Knievel, Evel became a household name in the '70s for his televised death-defying motorcycle stunts - including a legendary failed attempt to jump across Wyoming's Snake River Canyon in a rocket-powered Skycycle - and his patriotic Stars-and-Stripes jumpsuits.

Knievel also gained fame by earning a Guinness world record for surviving 433 broken bones during his 20-year jumping career.


The stuntman died in Florida on November 30, 2007 at the age of 69.

The movie will be based on the 2008 book Life of Evel, by writer Stuart Barker.

Tatum's production partner, Reid Carolin, will write the screenplay for the as-yet-untitled project.

Newly-named Fifty Shades of Grey producers Mike De Luca and Dana Brunetti are also tipped to join the production team.

It's not the first time the showman's story has been brought to the big screen.

Perma-tanned thesp George Hamilton played the thrill-seeker in a 1971 effort called Evel Knievel, and the stuntman himself starred in 1977's Viva Knievel!

Check out a vintage interview with Knievel here.

'Bigger' Magic Mike sequel

Meanwhile, hold on to your G-strings, folks ... Tatum has confirmed that another Magic Mike movie is in the works.

Asked in a Twitter Q&A for Glamour magazine yesterday about the idea of a sequel, the actor replied: "Yes, yes and yes! We're working on the concept now. We want to flip the script and make it bigger."

Perhaps the next outing really will be presented in "guyMAX"?

This isn't the first time we've heard word of a potential follow-up.

"We're actually talking about the possibility of doing the prequel," Magic Mike co-star Joe Manganiello told Hollywood.com last month.

*Spoiler ahead*

"Because if you do the sequel, then you lose Mike [Channing Tatum's character]. Otherwise, what's Mike going to do? He's going to come back for one big heist ... so, you would do the prequel - how they got there."

From the big screen to Broadway

Tatum, a former stripper himself, also recently dished on previously reported plans to turn the big screen stripper story into a musical.

The 32-year-old actor, director Steven Soderbergh, and writer Reid Carolin recently announced plans to spin off a live stage show based on the movie.

"[Co-star] Matt Bomer started singing some of the songs while he was onstage, and he was like, 'This would kill as a musical,'" Tatum told Entertainment Weekly. "That cemented it for me."

Chimed Soderbergh: "We want to do something interactive...so it becomes like Tony n' Tina's Wedding."

Carolin also spoke to USA Today about the project.

"We are working on it as a Broadway show, which would be a different story, more of a romp, more of a fun night out at a club with a story," he said. "I'm almost more excited about that than the movie because I think it's the perfect thing for women to go see on Broadway, to be participants in the show."

Tatum, promoting the film in London this week, said that he hasn't "cracked what the actual show is" yet, but said that he knows he wants the show to be "very interactive".

Save up those $5 bills, ladies.

Magic Mike hits New Zealand cinemas on July 26.

- Blogger Bites Back