With his latest pandemic thriller “Contagion” enjoying critical praise and generating more than $50 million in ticket sales, Steven Soderbergh has already started rolling the cameras on his next project, and this time, he’s keeping it in town.
The Oscar-winning director, who hasn’t shot a film primarily in L.A. since 2006’s “The Good German,” recently began production on “Magic Mike,” a comedy about male strippers living in Tampa, Fla., at Mulligan’s Family Fun Center in Torrance. The five-week shoot, which will mostly film in L.A. with some on-location filming to take place in Florida, has since shot scenes in Hollywood and Studio City and at Dockweiler Beach, according to FilmL.A. Inc., the nonprofit that handles film permits.
Soderbergh’s filming locations have spanned several states and countries over his lengthy career, which began more than two decades ago with the cult classic “Sex, Lies and Videotape.” “Contagion” was shot primarily in Illinois, a state the director has also used for filming parts of “Ocean’s Eleven,” “Ocean’s Twelve” and “The Informant!” His next film to hit theaters, “Haywire,” a spy thriller starring Channing Tatum that is scheduled for a Jan. 20 release, was shot largely in Ireland.
“Magic Mike,” is based on Tatum’s early life as an exotic dancer in Tampa and has Tatum playing the title character, Mike Martingano, a veteran stripper who takes a newbie dancer, played by Alex Pettyfer, under his wing. Matthew McConaughey, Olivia Munn, Joe Manganiello and Elvis Presley’s granddaughter, Riley Keough, will also star in the film.
The privately financed project does not yet have domestic distribution and is being produced by Nick Wechsler, Gregory Jacobs, Tatum and Reid Carolin, who also wrote the script.
A publicist for the film said producers were unavailable for comment.
After “Magic Mike,” Soderbergh is planning to direct the Warner Bros. film “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.,” based on the 1960s television series and scheduled to begin shooting in February, and the biopic “Liberace” about the flamboyant pianist, scheduled to start filming in June.
-- Dima Alzayat