The Charming Potato is joining the cast of Kingsman: The Golden Circle!

I remember the moment Channing Tatum clicked for me. It certainly wasn’t on first exposure. Sometimes I see an actor and immediately like what they’re doing, and when I saw A Guide To Recognizing Your Saints, it was with some early hype about both the director, Dito Montiel, and this amazing new young star, Channing Tatum. Didn’t work for me at all. He was fine in the Step Up films, but that’s because the dancing was front and center. Films like Dear John or Stop-Loss did nothing to change my opinion of Tatum, and in a few cases, like G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra or The Eagle, I thought his presence actually damaged the overall movie.

For me, the first sign that he might actually be worth paying attention to was The Dilemma, which is not a great film at all. But it does have a scene-stealing appearance by Tatum. There were some more misses like The Son Of No One and 10 Years, and then, for whatever reason, he booked a role in Steven Soderbergh’s Haywire, a small fun action spy movie built around Gina Carano. Tatum’s only got a few scenes in the film, but he makes the most of them, and Soderbergh must have liked what he saw. He and Tatum started to develop Magic Mike as a script, and in the meantime, Tatum booked the films that changed everything as far as I’m concerned.

His 2012 was amazing. 21 Jump Street would be a great year for any actor, and so would Magic Mike. But for one guy to star in both of those the same year? Incredible. For one thing, we learned that Tatum could be funny. We also learned that he wasn’t embarrassed about his past, especially if it could serve to become a film as textured and funny as Magic Mike. Once he started booking the right roles, it was like the scales fell from eyes and I could suddenly see again. By now, Tatum’s a reliable bellwether for picking smart projects, and while he may still make the occasional Jupiter Ascending, that’s only because he’s ambitious and he likes to work with ambitious filmmakers.

Enter Matthew Vaughn.

I have no idea what role Tatum’s going to play in next year’s sequel to one of last year’s most engaging surprises. I love the poster he put up on his Twitter account today —

— and I’m excited to see what else Vaughn has in store for us. He’s got Julianne Moore and Halle Berry already onboard, and I certainly hope Sophie Cookson is back as Roxy. Certainly we saw a hint in the previous teaser poster that Harry Hart is not truly dead, as it seemed he was by the end of the first film. All I know is that Matthew Vaughn’s directing his first sequel to his own work and he’s got Jane Goldman onboard to make the script magic.

He and Tatum seem like people who would get along, and I’m dying to see what the Golden Circle is, how Tatum fits into the American branch of the Kingsmen, which I believe are called The Statesmen. Whatever the case, I hope Vaughn keeps building the cast, because it’s huge fun watching this ensemble come together. I have a feeling the Kingsmen are in safe hands.

Kingsman: The Golden Circle will be in theaters June 16, 2017.

A respected critic and commentator for fifteen years, Drew McWeeny helped create the online film community as "Moriarty" at Ain't It Cool News, and now proudly leads two budding Film Nerds in their ongoing movie education.