'Hunger Games': Why Was Steven Soderbergh On Set?

The Hunger GamesEarlier this month, Steven Soderbergh showed up on the set of “The Hunger Games,” and a few crewmember tweets later, the Internet was flooded with wild, rampant speculation – an unusual departure from the web’s characteristic restraint. Now, the director has opened up about what exactly he was doing on the set of the heavily anticipated new film.

During an interview to promote the director’s new “Contagion,” Moviefone got down to brass tacks and asked the director what was going on, and how he came to be working on “The Hunger Games.”

“The story is really simple,” Soderbergh explained. “Back in April, [director] Gary [Ross] -- who is a close friend of mine I've exchanged creative favors with non-stop over the last 15 years -- when he got the boards for the shoot in April called me and said, ‘Hey, first week of August, I got these two days of second unit. Is there any way you can come down and help me out? Because I'd rather have you do it than hire somebody who I don't know.’”

After completely dismantling a moth’s worth of speculation over Ross’ job security, the potential of the “Hunger Games” franchise and whether Soderbergh might possibly be helming a sequel, the director went into more detail as to what his job actually entailed. As opposed to one of his normal gigs, Soderbergh was expected to work in a mold already established by Ross and cinematographer Tom Stern.

“If I’ve done my job properly, I hope I did, by design, you wouldn’t be able to tell what I did,” said the director. “Because it’s supposed to cut seamlessly into what they’re doing. That’s the whole point. That’s why he asked me to come down, because he knew that I would be rigorous about matching what they were doing.”

What do you think about the director of “Ocean’s Eleven” and “Traffic” working on “Hunger Games” as a gun-for-hire? Would you have preferred the hit books adapted through his aesthetic? Tell us in the comments below or on Twitter!