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Will Soderbergh's 'Bubble' Burst on Hollywood?

A poster for Steven Soderbergh's new movie, <i>Bubble</i>, which will be aired on HDTV the same day it hits theaters.
A poster for Steven Soderbergh's new movie, Bubble, which will be aired on HDTV the same day it hits theaters.

Steven Soderbergh's new film, Bubble, is the source of much hand-wringing in Hollywood. But what has entertainment executives agitated isn't the film's story -- about a murderous love triangle at a doll factory -- but the way it's being released. Terry Gross speaks with Jonathan Bing, who writes the "Hard Sell" column for Variety magazine.

The method of simultaneous release is known as a "day-and-date" strategy. It clashes with the prevailing method of timed releases, in which more than four months usually separate a film's theatrical debut and its DVD sale. It is only after sales have ebbed in those two critical markets that most movies are broadcast on television.

The day-and-date approach for Bubble will be duplicated for five other films by Soderbergh, who has entered into a partnership with Broadcast.com founder Mark Cuban. Cuban, the outspoken Internet billionaire who also owns the NBA's Dallas Mavericks, is using his network of art-house theaters and digital television to

In collapsing the months-long release window into a matter of days, Cuban says consumers will have more choice in how content is delivered, which may result in higher overall sales. In answering critics who have decried the day-and-date approach as the death knell of the theater experience, Cuban has compared the approach to the NBA, in which sold-out games are also aired live on television.

Copyright 2023 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

Combine an intelligent interviewer with a roster of guests that, according to the Chicago Tribune, would be prized by any talk-show host, and you're bound to get an interesting conversation. Fresh Air interviews, though, are in a category by themselves, distinguished by the unique approach of host and executive producer Terry Gross. "A remarkable blend of empathy and warmth, genuine curiosity and sharp intelligence," says the San Francisco Chronicle.