For a man who’s retired from directing movies, Steven Soderbergh keeps finding increasingly creative ways to circumvent his vow. Behind the Candelabra was technically a TV movie (though it played in theaters in many foreign territories) and The Knick is a Cinemax TV series, but clearly, he has no intention to stop working.
The Oscar winner recently tweeted an image of a clapperboard indicating that production had begun on the Magic Mike sequel, a project he handed off to his long-time collaborator Gregory Jacobs. But Soderbergh hasn’t exactly stepped off the stage—his pseudonym as a cinematographer is Peter Andrews. So technically, he’s not directing Channing Tatum in Magix Mike XXL, but he’ll be behind the camera, as well as serving as the film’s camera operator and editor. “I want to be there, but I don’t want to be the director,” Soderbergh told GQ in June. “I want to be a part of it. I want to be in the band, but I just don’t want to be the frontman this time.”
So good luck, Greg Jacobs. I’m sure your cameraman won’t second-guess your every shot. As Tatum told the Hollywood Reporter last year, directing a non-Soderbergh Soderbergh film “would be like having sex with your girlfriend while her porn-star ex-boyfriend is in the room watching you.”
Magic Mike XXL is scheduled for July 1, 2015.