Oscar-Winning Filmmaker Steven Soderbergh Is the Reason There’s a Bill & Ted 3
It would be an understatement to say that say it was “shocking” to learn that Academy Award-winning filmmaker Steven Soderbergh (Out of Sight, Traffic, Contaigon, etc.) is an executive producer on Bill & Ted Face the Music, the upcoming third excellent adventure of Bill S. Preston, Esq. and Ted “Theodore” Logan, III. Not everything Soderbergh makes is “highbrow” — he directed three Ocean’s Eleven movies and the male stripped comedy Magic Mike, for example — but still. I don’t think anybody really expected to see his name associated with this pair of lovable nincompoops.
Since Soderbergh had just completed working on the experimental HBO series Mosaic with B&T co-writer Ed Solomon, I think a lot of us assumed that Solomon had basically roped in the Erin Brockovich director to do him a solid. But as it turns out, Soderbergh actually kickstarted the whole project without any nudging from Solomon.
In a new interview with Flaviar’s NightCap Live, Soderbergh reveals:
“When Ed and I started working on Mosaic, I knew, of course, that he had Bill & Ted in his past. And one day we were talking, and he was like, ‘You know, we wrote a third Bill & Ted movie.’ And I said, ‘Well, great! Like, what’s going on with that? Can I read it?’ And I read it, and I was just part of a group of people, including Scott Kroopf, the original producer, and Keanu [Reeves] and Alex [Winter], that really wanted to see this happen. My role was more as cheerleader than anything. The companies that own the rights to make a sequel, I called them up and said, ‘This script’s hilarious, why aren’t we doing this?’ We found a fantastic director, Dean Parisot, who I’ve known for a long time… I’ve seen it, it’s really good, and we’re almost done, and I feel like it’s the perfect movie for people who want to feel better about what’s happening right now.”
The original Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure came out in 1989 — the same year Soderbergh was winning acclaim for his debut film, Sex, Lies, and Videotape. I’m sure when he was accepting the Palme d’Or at that year’s Cannes Film Festival, nobody thought he’d get involved with this franchise thirty years later. Crazy stuff.
Bill & Ted Face the Music is currently scheduled for release on August 21, although if movie theaters don’t re-open before then, that will likely change. In the meantime, you can catch up with all our coverage of the film here.