When George Clooney replaced Bruce Willis in ‘Ocean’s Eleven’
(Credit: Alamy)

Film News

When George Clooney replaced Bruce Willis in ‘Ocean’s Eleven’

George Clooney is a legend who deserves a break from all the Batman jokes. He even talked about how he is “terrible” in the highly-maligned film. However, a bad acting role cannot taint the unbridled swagger and glitzy filmography that this suave two-time Academy Award-winning icon has to offer, making hearts flutter.

After suffering from Bell’s palsy as a child that left his face partially paralysed for nearly nine months, Clooney developed a habit of having a good laugh at himself which further enhanced his ability to receive criticism in a positive light in his career.

Once he’d bagged his first role as an extra in the television miniseries ER- which eventually earned him an Emmy and a Golden Globe- his breakthrough role in Robert Rodriguez’s bizarre horror-comedy-cult-thriller alongside Quentin Tarantino, titled From Dusk Till Dawn put him in the spotlight. 

After the initial backlash with his role as Batman in Joel Schumacher’s film, he appeared in Steven Soderbergh’s well-praised film Out of Sight, thus commencing a fruitful relationship with the filmmaker, subsequently starring in the box office success Ocean’s franchise. 

The Ocean’s franchise is one of the very few successful trilogies that are rewatchable. Soderbergh released Ocean’s Eleven in 2001, followed by Ocean’s Twelve in 2004 and Ocean’s Thirteen in 2007, with the same ensemble. Later, the filmmaker released an all-female-led Ocean’s 8 spin-off film in 2018. While Ocean’s fans love the trilogy to death, there are certain secrets that many do not know. 

For instance, the film would probably not have George Clooney appear as a swanky fashionable gentleman in the film, had Bruce Willis snagged the role. 

Although Clooney put in huge amounts of effort to retain his character’s saga in the film and the franchise, the actor almost would have missed out on the role if Willis did not have scheduling conflicts. Although Willis had initially agreed to play Danny Ocean, he later backed out, leading Clooney to star as the iconic Danny Ocean.

As Ocean, Clooney is smooth and smug, adept and shows off an unimaginable swagger that compliments his witty quips throughout the film. The Die Hard actor, however, makes a special appearance in the 2004 film. 

The first film of the trilogy, Ocean’s Eleven has a splendid ensemble, namely Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Julia Roberts, Bernie Mac and others. 

One of Soderbergh’s best films, Ocean’s Eleven sees Danny Ocean planning the biggest heist in history following his release. Ocean ropes in ten other members and plans to rob three impregnable Las Vegas casinos to make a profit of $150million. However, the heist is not easy and Ocean and his ten other heist-mates need to be extremely careful amidst the hostile climate. 

Watch Ocean’s Eleven on Netflix now.