Last week, we reported that the cast of Sandra Bullock‘s female reboot of Ocean’s Eleven has added Elizabeth Banks, Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter and Mindy Kaling. That report also teased that the project’s working title was Ocean’s Ocho, since the story will center on eight female thieves, but it seems that title wasn’t quite accurate. While doing press for his new film The Free State of Jones, director Gary Ross confirmed that the title is actually Ocean’s Eight, and that Ocean’s Ocho was just a nickname for the project.
This project has been secretly in development over the past few years, with Ocean’s Eleven director Steven Soderbergh, star George Clooney and producer Jerry Weintraub bringing aboard Olivia Milch (Town & Country) to write the script. Gary Ross revealed to SlashFilm that this project is not simply a female reboot, but a continuation of Steven Soderbergh‘s trilogy. Here’s what Gary Ross had to say below, discussing how both he and Steven Soderbergh have collaborated on each other’s projects over the years, and how Ocean’s Eight will be similar in tone to Ocean’s Eleven.
“I think it’s a pretty similar tone. You know, Steven Soderbergh and I are incredibly close friends, and we would not have done this if we weren’t. I don’t think he would’ve wanted anyone to do it if we weren’t. This is very much an extension and a continuation. He’s a producer on the movie. In one way or another, this has been a 20-year conversation between Steven and I, collaborating in ways the whole world doesn’t know about: I helped him on the previous Ocean’s Eleven films; he shot second unit on The Hunger Games; I’ve done ADR lines for him; and he reads all my scripts. It’s a very long, ongoing collaboration. This, I think, is a very seamless process. We’re different filmmakers, obviously, so there will be those differences, but one of the things I’m drawn to is the amazing tone Steven was able to create, and we discuss that a lot. We discuss the cinema a lot, the shooting style, the rhythm, the editing style, and the music. We discuss it all. I’m in no way trying to reinvent the tone, and I’m thrilled and honored to be extending it. It’s really fun to work with.”
The director wouldn’t confirm any of the cast members that have been previously reported, but he did joke that he’d “break the Internet” if they announced the cast right now. He also didn’t address rumors about the story, including reports that Sandra Bullock’s character is actually the ex-con sister of George Clooney’s Danny Ocean from Steven Soderbergh’s trilogy. The story reportedly centers on a group of eight thieves who plan on stealing an expensive necklace from the Met Ball, while framing a gallery owner for the crime.
While no other character details have been confirmed, Cate Blanchett is reportedly playing the right-hand woman of Bullock’s character, similar to Brad Pitt’s Rusty in the Ocean’s Eleven trilogy. Jennifer Lawrence was previously being eyed to reunite with The Hunger Games director Gary Ross on the project, but our report from last week claimed that she isn’t involved at this time. We’ll be sure to keep you posted with more on Ocean’s Eight as soon as more details come in.