Director Steven Soderbergh continues his foray into streaming movies with his latest, “Let Them All Talk,” a largely improvised nostalgia-tinged journey starring Meryl Streep, Candice Bergen, and Dianne Wiest as old friends reuniting. Written by American short story master Deborah Eisenberg, the film debuts on HBO Max on December 10.
Per HBO’s synopsis, “Let Them All Talk” tells the story of a celebrated author (Streep) who takes a journey with some old friends (Bergen and Wiest) to have some fun and heal old wounds. Her nephew (Lucas Hedges) comes along to wrangle the ladies as well as her new literary agent (Gemma Chan) who is desperate to find out about her next book.
First details on the making of the film were detailed in an Entertainment Weekly conversation with the cast back in October, who revealed some telling behind-the-scenes secrets.
“I told [Soderbergh] he was gonna ruin everything for every director, and every production designer, and everything else, because he made the movie for 25 cents — I know that’s what I was paid,” Streep said. “Then it was made in two weeks, and it was a free ride on the boat.”
Bergen also said, “I think [Soderbergh]’s the most fearless filmmaker, and his intellect is so piercing. He was doing the camerawork, so you sort of watched his brain right behind the camera, spinning like a top. It was really interesting. And short.”
Wiest revealed the film was shot with “no equipment. The only equipment was sound equipment. Steven held the camera in a wheelchair and just rolled along. None of the lights, and the trucks, all that stuff that goes into making movies, there’s none of it. There was Steven and this new camera.”
The guerrilla filmmaking style on “Let Them All Talk” was reinforced by the lack of a script, with Soderbergh handing his ensemble basic outlines of scenarios to experiment with in terms of the dialogue.
“Improvised feel? Well, yeah, it does, because it is,” Streep said. “I mean, they would give us the outlines of a situation, and then we knew where we had to end up. But they didn’t tell us how to get there.”
Outside of “Let Them All Talk,” Oscar winner Soderbergh most recently served as executive producer on the Quibi series “Wireless” as well as “Bill and Ted Face the Music.” Soderbergh is meanwhile at work on another film for HBO Max and Warner Bros., “No Sudden Move,” starring Don Cheadle, Benicio del Toro, David Harbour, Jon Hamm, Ray Liotta, and more. He’s also working on new edits of several earlier films, as he revealed to IndieWire over the summer.
Watch the first trailer for “Let Them All Talk” below.