Monday, January 10, 2011

Steven Soderbergh: the CDC, the NFL in the ATL

Posted By on Mon, Jan 10, 2011 at 10:32 AM

The Bitchuation: Is Soderbergh gonna take his ball and go home?
  • The Bitchuation: Is Soderbergh gonna take his ball and go home?

Steven Soderbergh is headed back to Traffic territory with Contagion, a hot-topic, multi-character, broad canvass feature starring a blockbuster cast that includes Matt Damon, Jude Law, Kate Winslet, Laurence Fishburne, and Gwyneth Paltrow.

He's currently shooting in Atlanta and surrounding locales starting with last week's high profile shoot at the CDC.

Facebook pages, and Twitter streams, You Tube accounts and blogs have been abuzz, including—

* local television station blogs like My Fox Atlanta

* regional blogs like Decatur Metro

* movie gossip sites like On Location Vacations


*the AJC's "The Buzz" offering shooting updates ("the production did a good bit of filming in Chicago before heading to Atlanta, and it’ll be here for a while"), traffic reports ("which snarled traffic in the CDC/Emory area yesterday, continues filming today"), casting info ("CNN’s esteemed Dr. Sanjay Gupta has signed on for a cameo role"), and tidbits for aspiring paparazzi and would-be stalkers, ("Based on what we’re hearing, it sounds like the downtown W hotel might be a good spot to keep your eyes peeled for a star encounter.")

Even Emory University posted footage to its official You Tube page covering the location shoot at CDC.

Amidst all of this activity, the notoriously versatile Steven Soderbergh conducted a "monster" interview for NFL Network's Rich Eisen's Podcast.

Critiquing NFL pre-and-post-game coverage might seem an odd way for a movie director to spend his time, Soderbergh's stream-of-consciousness-mind weaves in commentary about labor, film history, pop culture, broadcast trends, technology innovations and even adult entertainment. He shows a curiosity that informs his films, and clearly inspires his passion for story telling.

Its Good to be Rich Eisen
  • NFL Network
  • It's Good to be Rich Eisen

Here's Eisen's intro to the podcast:

Steven Soderbergh says he’s been watching an absurd amount of NFL pregame and postgame shows of late and joins the podcast to grade what he’s seen.

I must be honest. When I phoned him up (he was at the CDC in Atlanta scouting locations for his new movie “Contagion”), I had no idea what he’d say about me or the shows I anchor on NFL Network, let alone my colleagues on networks across the dial. It turned out to be a monster conversation — the longest one on the podcast to date. Especially since I couldn’t let Soderbergh get off the phone without asking him about Matt Damon’s recent quote that Soderbergh plans to retire from making movies after next year.

Without the time constrictions of broadcast, and by smartly opting not to make any edits, Eisen's interview with the Oscar-winning director allows Soderbergh to showcase a keen eye for fashion, a nerd's love of technology, an activist's understanding of labor, a comic sense of timing, and a bone dry wit.

His own self-described MC name is "Dry Ice."

A few gems:

* A critique of Fox Commentator Jay Glazer's Porn Facial Hair

Im here to fix the washing machine...
  • Fox Sports
  • I'm here to fix the washing machine...

* Rumination on why they dress the on-air talent at NFL pre-game shows like extras from Dick Tracy

Material, Girl

* Is Go Daddy a porn site?

Were not a porn site, but we play one on TV
  • We're not a porn site, but we play one on TV

* The revelation that he plans to "wind down" his career after he completes his current slate of projects (4 or 5 are mentioned, including one with "George", so this announcement means Soderbergh will be working for at least another 2 to 3 years given his prolific pace of production.)

My friends call me George
  • Handsome Club for Men
  • My friends call me George

Here's the link to the podcast:

Scroll to 1:03:54 for the beginning of the 39 minute interview.

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