Netflix has acquired Oscar-winner Steven Soderbergh’s next movie, a sports-based drama called High Flying Bird, which makes it the Ocean’s 11 director’s first collaboration with the streaming service. The film stars André Holland (Moonlight), Zazie Beetz (Deadpool 2), Melvin Gregg (UnREAL), Sonja Sohn (The Wire), Zachary Quinto (Star Trek), Kyle MacLachlan (Twin Peaks), and Bill Duke (Predator).
Set during a pro basketball lockout, High Flying Bird follows a sports agent (Holland) who pitches an “intriguing and controversial business proposition” to a rookie basketball client (Gregg), according to an official description provided by Netflix. Beetz is the right-hand to Holland’s character, according to Deadline.
High Flying Bird has been written by Tarell Alvin McCraney, an Oscar winner on Moonlight. Joseph Malloch, who worked with Soderbergh on his iPhone-shot psychological horror Unsane, produced it. Ken Meyer (Unsane) and Holland via Harper Road Films are executive producers. Deadline reports that Sodebergh filmed High Flying Bird using an iPhone as well.
"We had several strong options for distributing High Flying Bird, but to borrow the patois of the movie itself, this deal felt like a slam dunk and the perfect way for me to begin my relationship with Netflix as a director,” Soderbergh said in a statement.
A Palme d’Or winner for his 1989 breakthrough movie Sex, Lies, and Videotape, he went on to direct films such as the biography Erin Brockovich, the crime drama Traffic (which won him an Oscar), the Ocean’s trilogy, comedy-drama Magic Mike, and last year’s heist comedy Logan Lucky. Soderbergh frequently writes, shoots and edits his own movies.
High Flying Bird will release in 2019 on Netflix.