Steven Soderbergh Pushed Warner Bros. To Take The Meeting With Christopher Nolan To Direct Insomnia

Steven Soderbergh had a hand in Christopher Nolan landing the director’s chair for the 2002 thriller Insomnia. The Command Z director recently recalled that he reached out to Warner Bros. bosses to suggest they take a meeting with Nolan.

“What happened was, I got a call from Chris’ agent, Dan Aloni, who I had known because he screened Memento for me after Memento couldn’t find a distributor after being on the festival circuit for a year,” Soderbergh said in an interview with Rolling Stone. “Dan calls me up out of the blue and says, ‘Could you watch this movie? I have this client of mine who has this movie, and we think it’s really good, but nobody will pick it up and we don’t understand why. Maybe we’re all crazy.’”

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He continued, “I see the movie, and I think it’s a fucking instant classic, and I go, ‘Well, this is really depressing.’ I was really upset when I got out of there. It turns out that the financiers, Newmarket, opened their own distribution company and made $25 million on it.”

Soderbergh goes on to explain that months later, Aloni called him and tells him that Nolan is “really interested” in the Insomnia script that Warner Bros. has but the studio wasn’t taking the meeting with the Memento director.

“And I go, ‘What do you mean they won’t take the meeting?’ And [Dan] goes, ‘Well, the executive there didn’t like Memento.’ And I said, ‘Well, so what? Why won’t they take the meeting?’ So, I called that executive and I said, ‘Take the meeting. You’ve got to take the meeting.’ And he goes, ‘But I didn’t like the movie.’ And I go, ‘Well, did you like the movie-making?’ And he goes, ‘Well, yeah, it’s brilliantly made.’ And I go, ‘Take the meeting.’ That is all I did,” Soderbergh recalled. “I knew Chris well enough to know that if he gets in the room, he’s going to get that job. The executive came back and said, ‘I really love Chris.’ And I go, ‘Well, yeah.’ And he asked if Section Eight would come on as producers, and I said, ‘Sure.’ That was it.”

The Magic Mike’s Last Dance director played down his part in helping Nolan land the meeting with Warner Bros. and claimed the Oppenheimer director would’ve still been successful if he had not directed Insomnia.

Insomnia is a psychological thriller that was released in 2002 and starred Al Pacino, Robin Williams, Hilary Swank, Maura Tierney, Martin Donovan, Nicki Katt and Paul Dooley.

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