Promoting his virus thriller Contagion at the Venice Film Festival, director Steven Soderbergh downplayed his recent statements about retiring from directing movies and said he planned a brief sabbatical in order to reinvigorate himself.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Soderbergh, 48, backed away from an interview last week when he announced plans to quit filmmaking entirely and start a new career as an artistic painter.
“It’s less dramatic than it sounds, it’s just a sabbatical,” Soderbergh told London’s Observer at Venice. “I feel I need to recalibrate, so I can discover something new. I’m out of ways of telling art.”
Meanwhile, Soderbergh stayed busy on the moviemaking front working with scribe Scott Z. Burns on the upcoming adaptation of the ‘60s spy show The Man from U.N.C.L.E. Soderbergh also continued prep work on his upcoming male stripper comedy Magic Mike, based on Channing Tatum's own experience stripping when he was 19-years-old in Tampa.
Tatum joined the film as the veteran stripper Magic Mike who coaches Alex Pettyfer's young stripper how to hustle on and off-stage.
Contagion, starring Matt Damon, Marion Cotillard, Kate Winslet and Bryan Cranston, opens Sept. 9.