CITIZENFOUR Trailer: Revealing Documentary Provides First-Person Account of the Edward Snowden Leak

by     Posted 40 days ago

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Radius-TWC and Participant Media have released the first Citizenfour trailer for director Laura Poitras’ (The Oath) documentary about Edward Snowden and the NSA leak.  I honestly wasn’t aware of this film’s existence before today, but it looks to be an absolutely riveting and revealing look at the events that lead to Snowden leaking confidential NSA documents.  Poirtras was contacted anonymously by Snowden in January 2013 about the files he was about to leak, giving her unprecedented access to what exactly went down.  The film debuted at the New York Film Festival last night to highly positive reviews, with THR calling it “revelatory”, Indiewire describing it as “bracing”, and The Guardian going so far as to say it’s a “victorious film [that] shows Snowden vindicated.”  Moreover, the pic apparently offers shocking new details about how high up the chain the spying program actually goes.  I’m incredibly curious to check this one out myself, and this first trailer does a fantastic job of teasing without revealing.

Watch the first Citizenfour trailer after the jump.  Executive produced by Steven Soderbergh, the film is slated to open in theaters on October 24th.

The TRUE DETECTIVE Effect: Why Filmmakers Are Flocking to Long-Form Storytelling

by     Posted 45 days ago

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It’s no secret that we’ve been living in the “Golden Age of Television” for some time now, going back to the early days of The Sopranos and The Wire.  The quality has remained high over the past decade or so, but as with all forms of media, it has evolved with the times.  Story is still king and the abundance of cable networks have allowed a wide variety of stories to be told on a number of different canvases: a five-season long character transformation on Breaking Bad, a dense and obtuse period study on Mad Men, a twist on the “procedural thriller” formula on Homeland, and even a unique take on the horror genre with Penny Dreadful.  However, in addition to the high quality and the sheer enormity of solid programming on display, a new trend has begun to take shape thanks to HBO’s tremendous True Detective.

That series was an oddity in that one filmmaker—Cary Joji Fukunaga—directed every single episode, resulting in the kind of singularity of vision and artistry usually reserved for feature films.  And now, based on True Detective’s success with the experiment, highly revered directors like David Fincher, Steven Soderbergh, and David Lynch are throwing their hats into the ring. 

MAGIC MIKE XXL Adds Elizabeth Banks, Donald Glover, Amber Heard, and More to Cast; Gets a Synopsis

by     Posted 52 days ago

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I’m getting excited for Magic Mike XXL (despite the fact that Matthew McConaughey won’t be returning).  And I’m excited even though original director Steven Soderbergh (who was able to guide his first film from a $7 million budget to a $167 million worldwide gross), won’t be back either (actually he will, since he’s shooting it under his alias Peter Andrews, which effectively provides new director Gregory Jacobs with the best sounding board ever).  This movie will still, in all likelihood, rule. Channing Tatum is of course back and now he’s got company.

Elizabeth Banks and Donald Glover have joined the film along with Amber Heard, Andie MacDowell and Jada Pinkett-Smith.  And it has a synopsis now too!  Hit the jump to learn the (bodacious) plot basics for Magic Mike XXL.

THE KNICK Recap: “Start Calling Me Dad”

by     Posted 62 days ago

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The threads that The Knick has laid down for its first five episodes have started to intertwine in its sixth.  Algernon’s secret medical practice has an unexpected visitor, and Cornelia takes steps to apprehend Typhoid Mary.  Even Thackery’s desire to figure out where Christiansen went wrong in his treatment of previa patients turned a corner.  And though it wouldn’t be an episode of The Knick without a death, “Start Calling Me Dad” was, on the whole, one of the series’ lighter episodes.  Hit the jump, or away, moldy rogue, away!

Matthew McConaughey Will Not Be Back for MAGIC MIKE XXL, Movie is “Very Different”

by     Posted 64 days ago

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This isn’t entirely unexpected, but we can put a big R.I.P. on the wishful thoughts that every Magic Mike cast member would be back for Magic Mike XXL.  Despite the global success of director Steven Soderbergh’s original film (the $7 million budget was rewarded with a $167 million worldwide gross), co-star Matthew McConaughey will not be returning.  I’m not too surprised since the sequel is already shooting and we hadn’t heard too much about his involvement.

Magic Mike XXL is being directed by Gregory Jacobs and will be shot by Peter Andrews (aka Steven Soderbergh) and edited by Mary Ann Bernard (aka Steven Soderbergh).  And don’t worry, it still stars Channing Tatum.  Hit the jump for more on Matthew McConaughey not coming back for Magic Mike XXL.

THE KNICK Recap: “They Capture the Heat”

by     Posted 69 days ago

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After watching so many Fall pilots in which everything is spelled out and set up in sometimes excruciating “telling but not showing” detail, The Knick is a breath of fresh air from the other side of the spectrum.  But for The Knick, it’s also not about style over substance (like, say, Boardwalk Empire‘s latest premiere) or telling vignettes that don’t seem to propel the story forward in any way (like much of Masters of Sex this season).  Instead, it swims along, connecting everything back to the premise of early 20th century medicine in a number of different ways, while keeping them all interesting.  Hit the jump for why “it’s a crying shame all those pretty silver stitches are going to seal up that fat man.”

Eve Hewson Talks THE KNICK, the Gory Surgery Scenes, Steven Soderbergh, and Her Love of E.T.

by     Posted 75 days ago

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Created by Jack Amiel and Michael Begler and directed by Steven Soderbergh, the Cinemax drama series The Knick showcases The Knickerbocker Hospital in New York City in 1900, when it was the home to groundbreaking surgeons, nurses and stuff who pushed the boundaries of medicine in a time of high mortality rates and no antibiotics.  Equal parts brilliant and arrogant, Dr. John Thackery (Clive Owen) is the newly appointed leader of the surgery staff, but his own ambition for medical discovery is almost overshadowed by his addiction to cocaine and opium.  While addressing issues of race, sex and class, the show will undoubtedly make viewers grateful for how far we’ve come.

During this exclusive interview with Collider, actress Eve Hewson (who plays fresh-faced nurse Lucy Elkins) talked about what led her down a path to acting, how she came to be a part of The Knick, why she decided to sign on for a TV show, what it’s like to have someone like Steven Soderbergh directing every episode, why she likes doing accents, the power play between Lucy and Dr. Thackery, what it’s like to shoot the scenes in the surgical theater, the craziest surgery scenes that they shot, the types of roles she’d like to do, and her desire to do theater on Broadway.  Check out what she had to say after the jump.  The Knick airs on Cinemax on Friday nights. 

MAGIC MIKE XXL Second Unit Filming Has Begun with Steven Soderbergh as Camera Operator

by     Posted 80 days ago

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Ladies and gentlemen, Magic Mike XXL is on the way.  Director Steven Soderbergh’s “male stripper movie” Magic Mike was one of the bigger surprises of 2012 in more ways than one.  Not only did the $7 million pic become a box office smash to the tune of $167 million worldwide, but Soderbergh dug deep into his subject matter, crafting a seriously dramatic story about the American Dream against the backdrop of the male stripper world.  Tatum has been hard at work on the Magic Mike sequel for the past year, and today Soderbergh revealed that second unit filming has already begun via a Magic Mike XXL image on Twitter.  Though Soderbergh is in retirement from film directing, he’s acting as the cinematographer, camera operator, and editor on Magic Mike XXL while Gregory Jacobs takes over the director’s chair.  It appears that he’s getting a jump on things before principal photography begins in earnest, with a little second unit photography work in Myrtle Beach.

Take a look at the teaser Magic Mike XXL image after the jump, courtesy of Soderbergh.  Full cast has yet to be confirmed, but Tatum is back in the lead role and the film is slated to hit theaters on July 1, 2015.

THE KNICK Review: Clive Owen Leads Steven Soderbergh’s Gruesome But Immersive Hospital History

by     Posted 105 days ago

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The new Cinemax series The Knick, from creators/executive producers Jack Amiel and Michael Belger and director/executive producer Steven Soderbergh, takes a very old idea and gives it a new spin.  The irony is, it does so by going to the past.  The show focuses on New York City’s Knickerbocker Hospital starting in 1900, a popular time period on television at the moment (Boardwalk EmpireCopperDownton Abbey), as well as a popular subject for a series (that being a medical procedural).  But the pairing of the two makes The Knick‘s story something unique, and its singular artistic vision, under the direction of Soderbergh, illuminates the world beautifully.  Hit the jump for more.

HBO Announces BOARDWALK EMPIRE and THE COMEBACK Premiere Dates; Steven Soderbergh’s THE KNICK Renewed Early

by     Posted 133 days ago

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As the TCA’s are ongoing, HBO and Cinemax took the stage today to make a few announcements.  Boardwalk Empire season 5 will premiere on HBO on September 7th, kicking off the final stretch of episodes for the Steve Buscemi-fronted series.  Additionally, the return of The Comeback will take place in November, as the fantastic, Lisa Kudrow-led cult comedy returns for a six-episode limited series event following its short-lived first season back in 2005.

And on the Cinemax side of things, THR reports that creator/showrunner Steven Soderbergh’s upcoming drama The Knick has already been renewed for a second season, even though season one doesn’t premiere until August 8th.  Clive Owen stars as a surgeon at Knickerbocker Hospital in 1900 New York, an era in which medical procedures were extremely dangerous.  Soderbergh directed all 10 episodes of the first season and has stated his eagerness to return for season two.  Watch the trailer after the jump.

RED OAKS Comedy Pilot Teams Steven Soderbergh With David Gordon Green, Announces Cast

by     Posted 135 days ago

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Red Oaks seems like it could definitely be my type of jam. A comedy set in 1985 at a country club in New Jersey?  This has enough shades of Caddyshack to pique my interest.  Of course it doesn’t hurt that the show will be produced by Steven Soderbergh or that the pilot will be directed by David Gordon Green (Eastbound & Down).  Red Oaks is gearing up to shoot as a pilot for Amazon (who are still implementing their voting policy when it comes to determining what gets picked up to series).

And now the cast has been announced.  Red Oaks stars Craig Roberts (Submarine) as David Myers, a college student who’s an assistant tennis pro at the Red Oaks Country Club in suburban New Jersey in 1985.  Paul Reiser (Mad About You), Richard Kind (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Jennifer Grey (Dirty Dancing), Oliver Cooper (Californication), Gage Golightly (MTV’s Teen Wolf) and Ennis Esmer (CTV’s The Listener).  Guest stars include Josh Meyers, Freddie Roman and Alexandra Socha.

Starz Orders Anthology Adaptation of Steven Soderbergh’s THE GIRLFRIEND EXPERIENCE

by     Posted 150 days ago

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Though Steven Soderbergh appears to be steadfast in his self-imposed retirement from filmmaking, he’s remaining quite active in the television realm.  He directed all 10 episodes of the upcoming Cinemax drama The Knick, and now he’s poised to be involved in a TV adaptation of one of his own films.  Starz announced today that it has greenlit an anthology adaptation of Soderbergh’s 2009 indie The Girlfriend Experience, with filmmakers Lodge Kerrigan (Keane) and Amy Seimetz (Sun Don’t Shine) writing and directing the series.  The show will consist of 13 half-hour episodes and “explores the relationships of the most exclusive courtesans who provide their clients with far more than just sex.”

Soderbergh will serve as an executive producer on the series, and he came up with the idea for the execution of the show himself, “I thought: ‘let’s make it a different woman in a different city, let’s pair two independent writer/directors, one male and one female, and let them do the whole thing.’”  Long live Soderbergh.  Read the full press release after the jump.

Steven Soderbergh Will Act as Cinematographer, Camera Operator, and Editor for MAGIC MIKE 2

by     Posted 184 days ago

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Steven Soderbergh’s retirement from filmmaking has been tough to swallow for many reasons, not the least of which because he was so damn prolific over the past few years with some fascinating, challenging, and wildly different films.  He hasn’t given up directing entirely as he recently helmed all 10 episodes of the upcoming Cinemax series The Knick, but he remains steadfast in his decision to steer clear of moviemaking—even when it comes to the highly anticipated Magic Mike sequel.  Warner Bros. has already dated the follow-up—tentatively titled Magic Mike XXLfor next summer and Channing Tatum is hopeful that the entire cast will return, but it will be Tatum’s producing partner Gregory Jacobs in the director’s chair this time around instead of Soderbergh.

However, we now have confirmation that Soderbergh won’t simply be tangentially involved with Magic Mike 2.  He will resume his duties as cinematographer, camera operator, and editor on the sequel.  Hit the jump for more, including Soderbergh’s thoughts on returning in this capacity.

New Trailer for Steven Soderbergh’s TV Series THE KNICK Starring Clive Owen

by     Posted 206 days ago

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Cinemax has released a new trailer for Steven Soderbergh‘s upcoming drama series, The Knick.  The 10-episode series takes place in New York in 1900 and stars Clive Owen as a surgeon at Knickerbocker Hospital during an era in which antibiotics did not exist, medical procedures were extremely dangerous, and the mortality rates were insanely high.  In this teaser trailer, Owen’s character espouses how “we live in a time of endless possibility,” but it appears that “gloves” are outside the realm of possibility.

Hit the jump to check out The Knick trailer.  The show will debut sometime this summer.  Probably best not to eat before you watch it.

Teaser Trailer for Steven Soderbergh’s Cinemax Series THE KNICK Starring Clive Owen

by     Posted 271 days ago

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One of the reasons HBO’s anthology series True Detective is so good (and it is so good) is that all eight episodes were written and directed by the same two people (Nic Pizzolatto and Cary Fukunaga, respectively), bringing a degree of consistency to each episode that serves one overall vision with a definitive end point.  This same model is being utilized for Showtime’s upcoming drama series The Knick, which lured filmmaker Steven Soderbergh out of his self-imposed “retirement” to take the helm of all 10 episodes.  Cinemax has debuted an incredibly effective teaser trailer for the show, which takes place in New York in 1900 and stars Clive Owen as a surgeon at Knickerbocker Hospital during an era in which antibiotics did not exist, medical procedures were extremely dangerous, and the mortality rates were insanely high.  This teaser is much more sinister than I was expecting, promising that The Knick will be quite darker than your typical TV medical drama.  Then again,”typical” is the last word I’d use to describe Soderbergh’s work, so we’re surely in for something wholly unique.

Hit the jump to watch the teaser.  The Knick will debut on Cinemax this summer.

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