Despite his insistent claims of retirement, “Side Effects” isn’t going to be Steven Soderbergh’s last film — that would be Liberace bioic “Behind the Candelabra,” technically a TV movie, slated to premiere on HBO sometime this spring. And it looks like the small screen may be seeing more of the director, who told New York Magazine the following in a very interesting interview that went live last night:
Just to be clear, I won’t be directing “cinema,” for lack of a better word. But I still plan to direct — theater stuff, and I’d do a TV series if something great were to come along.
Television actually seems like a natural next stop for Soderbergh, who’s adept at adapting to new technology and who’s been remarkably prolific in terms of turning out new work in a way that could lend itself well to a TV schedule. Soderbergh also speaks of how the “tyranny of narrative is beginning to frustrate me, or at least narrative as we’re currently defining it. I’m convinced there’s a new grammar out there somewhere.” In that sense, he’s echoing what many filmmakers who’ve moved to TV have said in terms of having more space for storytelling and getting away from the traditional three-act structure.
While praising Shane Carruth, talking about why he no longer reads critics, confessing to reading Us Weekly and describing his plans to import Bolivian brandy, he also talks about the TV he’s been watching:
Pretty much what you’d expect: Breaking Bad. Can’t wait for that next season. Mad Men. Boss. I feel very lucky because David Fincher sent me advance episodes of House of Cards. I’ve got three to go, and I’m totally hooked. What I like about all those shows is that there’s an aesthetic that’s adhered to no matter who is directing it. They have rules, there’s a tool kit. I don’t like seeing stuff where there’s no coherence to the choices that are being made. And all those shows are shot like movies. That train-robbery episode in the last season of Breaking Bad? They had like eight days to shoot that episode. That’s good shit! And House of Cards is the most beautiful thing you’ve seen on a screen. Oh, and I watch Girls.
He also says he loves “Louie,” though that almost needn’t be said — “He seems like someone who would be fun to know.”