Soderbergh has a rather fraught relationship with the theatrical movie business. It began with his Liberace biopic “Behind the Candelabra,” which he had to go to HBO to make. This is partly what steered him to moviemaking retirement and ultimately over to TV with “The Knick.” Coming back to movies with “Logan Lucky,” a movie with an audience-friendly premise and big stars, you’d hope it would do pretty well. It didn’t, not even making back its relatively modest $29 million budget domestically. When it comes to trying to get a green light to return to that world, no amount of great reviews can help that. In a recent Reddit AMA Soderbergh took part in, he revealed that they, “Had a prequel all teed up about how Joe Bang got thrown in jail, but when the movie didn’t perform well enough to justify another go, we dropped the idea.” Soderbergh’s next movie was the also underperforming “Unsane,” and he’s more or less turned his back on theatrical filmmaking ever since.
We’re currently at a major turning point for streaming. SAG-AFTRA and the WGA are both on strike partly due to that business. The streaming bubble looks like it’s going to burst, but theatrical moviegoing isn’t fully back to what it once was, even if the “Barbenheimer” weekend was a boon.
Look, if Soderbergh starts finding it hard to make streaming movies and people won’t go see his movies in theaters, this is not a cinematic landscape I want to exist in. He’s one of our very best directors, constantly reinventing himself, and perfectly balances his broad and esoteric works. I want to see Steven Soderbergh movies back in theaters, so I’m imploring you to support them.
And I want to see that Joe Bang movie.