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Steven Soderbergh, in his ongoing efforts to make both movies he really likes and the occasional crowdpleaser, is apparently swinging back toward the celebrity end of the pendulum. The Playlist is reporting that Soderbergh has taken such a liking to Scott Z. Burns's script Contagion that he's assembling a cast as we speak in order to start filming this year.

And not just any cast-- Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Jude Law and Marion Cotillard are all apparently in the process of closing deals to star in the multi-layered, Traffic-esque action-thriller, about the rapid spread of a deadly virus. Apparently Soderbergh wants to get going on the film quickly because similar projects are in the works, which isn't surprising-- I honestly wonder why some kind of anthrax movie hasn't made its way into theaters by now.

The Liberace biopic starring Damon and Michael Douglas will get pushed back a bit as a result, to 2010, but for the most part this seems to be another example of Soderbergh rushing ahead with a project and actually having talent rush along with him. You've got to admire both the guy's work ethic and has ability to assemble a team in record time. Can't wait to see how this one turns out.

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