by Matthew Garrahan.
His disenchantment with Hollywood was inadvertently revealed by Matt Damon, who stars as Liberace’s young lover, Scott Thorson, in the film, when he told a journalist that Soderbergh intended to quit the business. “That’s when this all started to get traction,” he says, referring to the outcry sparked by his proposed retirement.
Soderbergh’s plan to retire sparked angst among film aficionados, distraught at the prospect of losing one of the best directors in the industry. He first burst on to the scene in 1989, when he won the Palme d’Or with his debut feature, Sex, Lies, and Videotape, and after a few years when he made “five films that nobody saw” he had a critical hit with Out of Sight, directing the only good performance ever given by Jennifer Lopez.
He won an Oscar for Traffic in 2001, was nominated for another in the same year for Erin Brockovich and assembled one of the starriest casts (George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Julia Roberts and others) of the past 20 years for the Ocean’s Eleven series. He has made a few flops — his four-hour biopic of Che Guevara is one — but has also had big commercial successes, most recently Magic Mike, his 2012 movie about male strippers.
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