Soderbergh exposes male strippers in new film

Thu Jun 28, 2012 6:26pm EDT
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By Zorianna Kit

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Filmmaker Steven Soderbergh's new movie "Magic Mike," inspired by actor Channing Tatum's real-life experiences as a teenager, takes the wraps off the world of male stripping and humanizes it through a chain of relationships.

Opening in the United States on Friday, the film features 32-year-old Tatum, Matthew McConaughey and Alex Pettyfer. Tatum plays Mike, who juggles several jobs by day and dances by night at Club Xquisite. Mike falls for Brooke (Cody Horn), sister of a 19-year-old nicknamed "the Kid" (Pettyfer) whom he recruits to work at the club. Mike, who charms women in his audiences, can't work his magic on Brooke because she doesn't like his lifestyle.

Soderbergh sat down with Reuters to talk about the movie, wardrobe malfunctions on the set and how 'Magic Mike' may have some commonality with erotica novel, "Fifty Shades of Grey."

Q: What made you decide that male stripping could be a viable idea for a film?

A: "As Channing described it to me, it felt like a really good movie idea. I'm always on the lookout for a world that I haven't seen before or been immersed in. So this was definitely that. It seemed ready-made."

Q: You worked with Channing on last year's action film "Haywire" and just finished working with him on "The Bitter Pill." What do you like about him?

A: "He really impressed me on 'Haywire.' He had good ideas and gave a great performance. I liked his attitude. He seemed like he had his act together and was smart about the business. During that experience we started talking about 'Magic Mike.' It felt like a no-brainer to hitch my wagon to the Channing Tatum train because I felt like he knows what he's doing. And it may not be any more complicated than I like the guy."

Q: Did you personally dive into the male stripper world in order to prepare for the shoot?   Continued...

Director Steven Soderbergh speaks during a news conference to promote the movie "Haywire" at the 62nd Berlinale International Film Festival in Berlin February 15, 2012. REUTERS/Morris Mac Matzen