Steven Soderbergh, King, Won't Direct A Superhero Movie Because 'There's No F***ing'

It's a day that ends in Y, so you can guarantee a journalist is out there asking a filmmaker about superhero movies again. This time it's "Magic Mike" and "Oceans" trilogy filmmaker Steven Soderbergh. It turns out, the director isn't chomping at the bit to hop on board a Marvel or DC production — but not for the reasons one might expect.

"Nobody's f***ing!" Soderbergh pointed out in a new interview with The Daily Beast. The filmmaker broke out with 1989's "Sex, Lies, and Videotape," and has made his fair share of sexy features since then. The director told The Daily Beast that his issue with superhero movies isn't a matter of highbrow or lowbrow art, saying, "I'm not a snob; it's not that I feel it's some lower tier in any way. It really becomes about what universe you occupy as a storyteller."

The Sexless Marvel Discourse Continues

The debate around mainstream superhero films' relative sexlessness is by no means a new one, with director Pedro Almodóvar making similar statements in 2019. Aside from the short run of more mature Netflix TV shows, the Marvel Cinematic Universe in particular is largely sex-free. There are moments like the vague lovemaking scene in "Eternals" and Tony Stark's frantic makeout session in the first "Iron Man," but the franchise as a whole remains fairly chaste. Of course, this could be because these are family-friendly films, but recent projects like "The Falcon and The Winter Soldier" have demonstrated a moral and political complexity that don't seem to be aimed at kids. Still, the smooching remains minimal.

Soderbergh contextualizes his comments about superhero movies within the context of narrative realism. He points out that the films seem to take place in a version of the world where basic details, like the science behind the story and the specifics of characters' jobs, are never explained. "Who's paying these people? Who do they work for? How does this job come to be?" he questions. For Soderbergh, the lack of sex seems to fall within the same category: an omission that requires a suspension of disbelief that, according to him, would make it tough to write within the world.

"Like, I don't know how to tell people how to behave in a world in which [sex] is not a thing," he says, before adding, "If people want to go experience that universe, that's fine. As a filmmaker, I just don't know where to start." While he makes a fair point, we're hopeful that there's more sexy superhero-ing on the horizon. Everyone in "Thor: Ragnarok" seemed a second away from hooking up, and judging by Tessa Thompson's description of its long-anticipated sequel, "Thor: Love and Thunder" will be even spicier. Also, there's no way a franchise can stay unsexy if it has Harry Styles playing a heartthrob character nicknamed the "Knave of Hearts." And if the superhero blockbusters let us down, we still have "Magic Mike's Last Dance" to look forward to.