Brow Beat

The Subtle Favor David Fincher Did for Steven Soderbergh in Gone Girl

Earlier in the film, Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) has less rarefied taste in booze.

Still from Gone Girl via YouTube

Back in April, Slate’s Troy Patteron interviewed Steven Soderbergh about an unlikely new job title: liquor importer. A quarter-century after he was toasted as “the future of cinema,” Patterson explained, Soderbergh was “striving to bring a clear brandy called singani from the mountains of South America to the bloodstreams of the north.” Soderbergh had first tasted singani while filming Che in Spain. The European local was standing in for Bolivia, which happens to be the spirit’s land of origin. The drink became a new passion.


If you’ve seen Soderbergh’s brand, Singani 63 (the number nods to the year the director was born), behind a bar or in a friend’s particularly well stocked liquor cabinet, you may have also recognized it in a more surprising place: on a counter in the Missouri home of Nick Dunne, the Gone Girl character portrayed by Ben Affleck in the David Fincher film that’s currently No. 1 at the U.S. box office.


A quick Google search turns up an explanation: Fincher, in turns out, was happy to do a favor for his fellow auteur, whose challenges in this new side business he perhaps had heard (or read) about. In September, Soderbergh explained to K&L Wine Merchants how the high-end product placement came to be.


… a friend did me a big favor and gave us a very prominent placing in Gone Girl, which will be out in a few weeks. He called and asked me to send him a few bottles. Then a few days later he sent me a screen grab back with a picture of Ben Affleck sitting at the kitchen table with the bottle sitting right next to him. So that was a very nice thing for David (Fincher) to do.

If you are inspired by the cameo to purchase some Singani 63 for yourself, you can do so at its website. And, once purchased, Brow Beat can heartily recommend Troy Patterson’s singani gimlet, a citrus-y cocktail which Patterson calls The Limey.

Read more in Slate about Gone Girl.

Steven Soderbergh’s Crazy Quest to Bring a Bolivian Brandy to American Bars