CNN – January 31, 2002

OCEAN’S ELEVEN – by Anwar Brett

Q: What was the appeal of “Ocean’s Eleven” for you?

Pitt: Working with Steven Soderbergh was the initial one for me. The idea as it was presented to me, to have an all-star cast, it seems so obvious now in retrospect, but it hasn’t been done for a while, and financially it can’t be done, it’s just not feasible. The idea seemed like so much fun, so we all jumped in.

Q: Does it seem strange to be working in an ensemble, as opposed to being the star of the piece?

Pitt: It takes the focus off you, you end up focusing on all the other guys, it’s such fun. Everyone’s holding up their end of the sheet, as with the heist. I guess it’s the same with the performances.

Q: Is it much different doing this and a film like “Snatch”?

Pitt: It’s pretty much the same vibe, great laughs and great people, where the time spent on set is actually bigger than the film itself.

Q: You seem to be eating in almost every scene, why was that?

Pitt: It was just something that started, and couldn’t stop. I don’t know what happened. It’s just the idea that you never have time to sit down and have a meal while you’re trying to pull off this heist, so he’s grabbing food all the time.

Q: Are films like “Ocean’s Eleven” more important now, in the wake of September 11, in offering escapist entertainment that takes audiences away from the grim realities of the real world?

Pitt: I think it’s wide open. Look at the 70s after Vietnam, there was a cry for great comedies but there was also some very dark subject matter, movies with more depth. I think that’s a natural occurrence, when you all have those images indelibly marked on your mind. I think there’s room for both, but I would say real entertainment is going to be the key.