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Steven Soderbergh is coming out of his self-imposed retirement from feature filmmaking. Maybe.
Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter the filmmaker is involved with his first film project in several years and is teaming up with Channing Tatum for the new venture.
The project is circulating to studios and is described as being in the vein of Ocean’s 11, the all-star caper movie Soderbergh directed in 2001, but with hillbillies. The plot revolves around a heist during a NASCAR-style race.
Glen Basner’s FilmNation is handling foreign sales. Sources confirmed that Soderbergh and Tatum are involved, although it’s unclear in what capacity.
An initial report about the project that surfaced on the web Wednesday evening also said that Matt Damon would star in the film, but that report was quickly called “wrong” by Soderbergh, writing under his Twitter handle @Bitchuation. “Rest assured,” he then tweeted, “all will be revealed when I give my exclusive, no-holds-barred interview with CATSTER magazine. You think I’m kidding.” He added, “To be clear: Facts are SO twentieth century … .”
Another story about the project said Michael Shannon would star with Channing, but THR could not confirm that involvement. Reps for all those whose names were surfacing declined comment.
It is also unclear whether Soderbergh intends to direct or produce the movie. The filmmaker hasn’t helmed a pic since 2013’s medical thriller Side Effects, which starred Tatum, Rooney Mara and Jude Law.
When he completed that film, Soderbergh announced he was retiring from movies, saying at the time “it just stopped being fun.”
He’s been more than busy, however, directing 2013 HBO movie Behind the Candelabra and Cinemax series The Knick and serving as cinematographer on last year’s Magic Mike XXL.
Tatum has become one of Soderbergh’s most frequent collaborators, with the two teaming up on 2011 action movie Haywire, 2012 hit Magic Mike and Side Effects.
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Jamie Lee Curtis