George Clooney, the renowned Hollywood actor, recently shared some interesting behind-the-scenes details about the making of the iconic "Ocean's" franchise during an interview at the 2023 TCM Classical Film Festival. The actor, who starred in the film series as Danny Ocean, revealed which A-list actors declined the opportunity to star in the film.
A Missed Opportunity for Johnny Depp and Mark Wahlberg
During the interview, Clooney spoke fondly of the film's director, Steven Soderbergh, who was nominated for Oscars for his work on "Erin Brockovich" and "Traffic".
Despite Soderbergh's reputation and critical acclaim, Clooney stated that some A-list actors refused to work with him. "Steven had just done Erin Brockovich and Traffic, and he was nominated for directing both films. So, people really wanted to work with Steven," Clooney said.
"That said, some people did say no to us." Clooney went on to reveal that Johnny Depp and Mark Wahlberg were among those who declined the opportunity to star in the film, which was a role of Linus Caldwell. "They did. Some very famous people told us to fuck right off: Mark Wahlberg, Johnny Depp.
There were others. They regret it now," Clooney stated.
The Role Eventually Went to Matt Damon
The role of Linus Caldwell eventually went to Matt Damon, who went on to star in the film alongside Brad Pitt, Andy Garcia, Julia Roberts, and Don Cheadle.
The film, which was released in 2001, was a huge success and spawned three more sequels: "Ocean's Twelve", "Ocean's Thirteen", and "Ocean's 8".
Clooney's Reflection on the Film Industry
Clooney also reflected on the state of the film industry at the time, stating that the studios were producing "very big, broad, not very good films" and that Soderbergh was trying to infuse independent film techniques into the studio system.
"Steven had this idea of trying to infuse all of this independent film stuff that all of these young filmmakers were learning back into the studio system. It was going to get back to the things that they were doing from like 1964 to 1975," Clooney said.
Clooney's next project is "Wolves", an Apple TV Plus movie directed by Jon Watts, the director of "Spider-Man: No Way Home". While we eagerly await the release of "Wolves", fans of the legendary actor can check out our guide to the most exciting upcoming movies of 2023 and beyond.