Rumors have long swirled around a revival of the Steven Soderbergh-directed Cinemax series “The Knick” that ended after two seasons in 2015; the cabler then canceled it for good in 2017.
Now Soderbergh says that a new season of the medical drama starring Clive Owen as a renowned surgeon in 1900s New York is in its early stages. According to a new interview with The Playlist, Soderbergh said a pilot has been written by the series’ creators Jack Amiel and Michael Begler, with “The Knick” star André Holland as well as filmmaker Barry Jenkins working in collaboration.
“[André and Barry] came up with a really great approach with Jack and Michael,” Soderbergh said. “And that seems to be advancing rapidly. I just read the pilot, which is terrific.”
Soderbergh remained coy about whether or not Jenkins would direct the series. “I’m very passive on that,” Soderbergh said. “That’s all Barry’s baby.” But he also added, with regard to Jenkins and Holland, “I told them, ’Look, I had, I had my shot. Godspeed, take it in whatever direction you want.’”
During a Reddit AMA back in 2017, Soderbergh offered fans a possible reason for why “The Knick” Season 3 died. “Season 3 of ‘The Knick’ was set in 1947 and was going — at my absolute insistence — to be shot in anamorphic black-and-white. It’s POSSIBLE that may have contributed to its demise.” That would’ve been quite a time jump from the original (color) series’ turn-of-the-century setting.
And speaking of sequels, Soderbergh also said a followup is on the way to his 2019 Netflix sports drama “High Flying Bird,” written by Tarell Alvin McCraney, author of the unpublished play that formed Jenkins’ “Moonlight” and creator of the OWN series “David Makes Man.”
“I also just read the new draft of what André [Holland] and I consider the follow-up to ‘High Flying Bird,’” Soderbergh said, with Holland being the star of the original film. “That’s really strong and incredibly timely, but it’s slightly different. It’s still sports, but it, but in a different context and I read it thinking, ‘Well, this all should happen soon. We need to like hit the gas pedal right now.’”
Soderbergh added: “[A sequel] was something that we were already interested in, but because of COVID and Black Lives Matter, suddenly, the power that the players have became really obvious. It was exciting to see them use it for change and to create awareness. They weren’t using it to line their pockets. I was riveted. I wanted to know more about all these conversations that led up to them going on strike.”
Soderbergh’s last film was “The Laundromat,” which bowed on Netflix at the end of 2019. His next film, “Let Them All Talk,” reunites him with his “Laundromat” star Meryl Streep. The movie is completed, and will premiere soon on HBO Max. Soderbergh most recently served as executive producer on the Quibi series “Wireless.”
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