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Thursday, September 22, 2005

Soderbergh: Why I'm experimenting

At the Toronto Film Festival, Steven Soderbergh spoke with Manohlia Dargis of the NY Times about his new movie "Bubble," and the deal he did with Mark Cuban and Todd Wagner. The trio have banded together to produce a series of low-budget movies, shot digitally, and release them in several formats simultaneously: theaters, DVD, and cable TV. "Bubble" is the first in this series. Next up are "The Good German" and "Che."

Dargis writes:

    "At the time that we started having these conversations," Mr. Soderbergh said, "what really prompted it is they had bought Landmark Theaters. And I knew they had HDNet. And I was sort of tracking where the whole DVD thing was going. And I guess it was about a year and a half ago when we met in New York. And I said, O.K., here's an idea: You're trying to brand your network, we all feel like these windows are going to collapse. Let's set up a situation where I make a cycle of films for a certain amount of money and they go out day and date on all formats" - simultaneous theatrical, cable and DVD releases - "and let's see what happens. And when they say yes, they just go."

    Which is how Mr. Soderbergh ended up with a high-definition camera - the same one George Lucas used for the last two "Star Wars" movies - in Belpre, [Ohio] where he set his sights on his three unlikely stars.