There's no getting around it; Steven Soderbergh made a permanent mark on the heist genre with his three Ocean's films. After leaving such an impact in the realm of silver screen grand larceny with Ocean's 11 (and 12 and 13), one would think that he would want move on from the genre altogether. However, Soderbergh recently opened up about his decision to step behind the camera for his upcoming heist dramedy Logan Lucky, explaining that the project's fundamental differences from the Ocean's movies were what drew him to the job. Soderbergh elaborated:
When I read (the script) it felt like it was a kind of film that I like to watch, the kind of film I like to make. It was different. It didn't feel like a repeat of the Oceans movie. It's in the same universe, but in a different galaxy.
The fact that Logan Lucky doesn't feel like an extension of the Ocean's 11 universe ultimately seems to be the biggest draw for Steven Soderbergh. On paper, the film maintains numerous similarities to the type of movie that the Ocean's 11 director has already shot in his career, but the film's tone, style, and core themes feel wholly different. It's not a story about white-collar gentlemen criminals taking on a casino in Las Vegas; it's a distinctly blue-collar story that depicts a decidedly different world.
On that note, Logan Lucky's basic premise feels like the traditional Soderbergh-esque heist formula with a dash of The Coen Brothers thrown in for good measure. Centering on two down-on-their-luck brothers (Channing Tatum and Adam Driver) the film tells the story of their mission to steal $14 million from a major NASCAR event. This brings them into contact with a deranged criminal demolitions expert named Joe Bang (a delightfully absurd Daniel Craig), and as you would likely expect: everything that can go wrong eventually does go wrong.
Check out the recently released trailer for Logan Lucky below to see how Steven Soderbergh's latest film is so stylistically different from his Ocean's 11 movies:
In the end, it's probably for the best that Steven Soderbergh has opted to move on from the world of Danny Ocean to try his hand at directing such a fundamentally different heist-themed project. His former franchise will continue to live on anyway, as Ocean's 8 (which features an all-female cast including Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, and Rihanna) will finally debut next year. Soderbergh is also attached to that project as its producer, but he has opted to hand off directing duties to The Hunger Games director Gary Ross. It's different -- as the director made abundantly clear in his comments to ABC News -- but it's similar enough that he understands the landscape.
Logan Lucky will officially debut in theaters at the end of the summer on August 18. Considering everything we have seen from the movie so far, I think it's safe to say that it's going to make off with quite a bit of our money in the process.