Steven Soderbergh is, in my mind, the perfect director, someone who wants to explore genre and the medium in such a way that he’s sometimes invisible (second unit on The Hunger Games? What?), sometimes front and center (weird indie films like Bubble and the gleefully subversive Magic Mike), but always there. He’s a man who enjoys the work and the final product alike. Reading interviews with him always makes me excited about creating things, and that’s rare nowadays. His sense of perspective and lack of ego when talking about his box-office failures (especially Haywire, which I loved but the audience thought was poison) is also inspiring. The fact that he’s opting to stop making films while he’s still at the top of his game and move on to new challenges only makes me admire (and maybe hate) him a bit more.
I’m going to miss going to see two or three of his movies every year, but with such a varied back catalogue (including an HBO series I completely forgot existed), I’ll be able to revisit and re-appraise his work for the rest of my life without ever getting bored. Thanks, Soderbergh.