Now that Section Eight is slowly closing its doors while it rides out its remaining films (The Good German, Ocean’s Thirteen), speculation has been rife about the plans of recent Oscar winner George Clooney. Partner Steven Soderbergh had had enough of the marketing and bureaucratic minutiae required to produce other people’s work and is re-focusing on his own filmmaking. And surely, after his multiple Oscar nods, Clooney will keep acting and directing. But what of the producing itch that pushed him to shepherd challenging fare like Syriana and Good Night, And Good Luck into the marketplace?
We think we have the answer: Word comes from deep inside the studio that Clooney plans to revamp and carry on a new version of the shingle with Eight’s former VP of Development and Good Luck co-writer Grant Heslov. And the two have reportedly already settled on a new name for their production company: Smoke House.
For those unfamiliar with its world famous garlic bread, the Smoke House Restaurant across the street from Warner Bros.’ Burbank lot has long been a favorite of Clooney’s, who started making regular jaunts there back in his “ER” days. A local fixture since the ’40s, the Smoke House was popular with WB stars like Errol Flynn and Judy Garland, and it continues to provide a welcome respite after marathon editing sessions and long days shooting hoops with the grips.
We say to the owners: Isn’t it time you named a sandwich after the man?