BUT FIRST, a headline. "Ellen Barkin and Al Pacino - Together Again!"
Moviegoers went wild for the sexy and dynamic Ms. Barkin back in 1989 when she did those steamy scenes with Pacino in "Sea of Love." Now, they find themselves filming "Oceans Thirteen."
How did it happen? Ellen says, "I don't know, but I think it's just the greatest that I got tapped for this movie. Jerry Weintraub, the producer who created the 'Oceans' franchise, gave me my first job, so maybe that's it. Being asked to join all these great guys - George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, etc. in this sequel was just completely unexpected. I couldn't have dreamed up a better thing to happen to me at this point. And now, also, I will be able to name my favorite director. People always ask me who it is, and I never knew what I wanted to say. But now I do - for all time - it's the amazing Steve Soderbergh!
"We have been filming on the Warner's lot, and last week I had my first day of work with Pacino. It seemed like I'd come full circle. 'Oceans Thirteen' is the perfect job to remind me of what's fun about acting. You know, I realized one should never be with anyone who doesn't respect you and your work outside of their personal relationship with you. That was brought home to me forcefully when I worked again with Al. And now we are off to Las Vegas for more filming. I just can't tell you how much I love acting with all these delightful guys! I hadn't known Matt Damon and his new young family, for instance, and he is just fabulous."
Starting today, the second sequel to the hit 2001 "Ocean's Eleven" remake returns for the first of two brief location shoots. (The second one takes place later next month.)
The production plans to pack a lot into this week's three-day visit, with scheduled locations ranging from Bellagio ("Ocean's Eleven's" primary setting) and Paris Las Vegas to McCarran International Airport and Strip construction sites.
"Everyone but Elliot Gould" will be making the location trek, reports executive producer Susie Ekins.
That includes such returning stars as George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle and Andy Garcia, along with newcomers Al Pacino and Ellen Barkin. (Not to mention director Steven Soderbergh, working from a script by Brian Koppelman and David Levien.)
Gould may not be visiting Las Vegas this time around, but his character, old-timer Reuben Tishkoff, definitely figures in this latest caper -- with Ocean and Co. out for revenge when a nasty casino owner (Pacino) cuts Tishkoff out of a deal.
Most of "Ocean's Thirteen" is filming on a Hollywood casino set, but "there's some things in Vegas you can't capture anywhere else," Ekins acknowledges. "You have to have some element of Vegas exteriors to make a believable movie."