WB still crazy for Section 8

Cosgrove continues as prexy, Fox co-prexy of shingle

NEW YORK — After delivering the Warner Bros. holiday hope “Ocean’s Eleven,” Steven Soderbergh and George Clooney’s Section Eight shingle has reupped at the studio for three more years. As part of a nonexclusive first-look pact, Section Eight will move to the renovated and roomy former offices of Jack Warner.

Clooney and Soderbergh will remain at WB — where Clooney starred in “The Perfect Storm” and “Three Kings” — partly because of a relationship that has blossomed with worldwide production head Lorenzo di Bonaventura.

“Lorenzo has been a great working partner with us and we feel it is the perfect fit for Steven and me,” Clooney said, adding that Ben Cosgrove will continue as co-president with Jennifer Fox, who left Universal to join Section Eight in July. Soderbergh and Clooney have named Grant Heslov director of development, and they are looking to add another executive to the company.

Section Eight, along with Jerry Weintraub, completed the star-studded remake of the Rat Pack casino heist comedy “Ocean’s Eleven,” which Soderbergh directed, and toplines Clooney, Julia Roberts, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and Andy Garcia.

Section Eight also produced, with Pandora, “Welcome to Collinwood,” a film written and directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, and teamed with Alcon Entertainment on “Insomnia,” a Chris Nolan-directed remake co-starring Al Pacino, Robin Williams and Hilary Swank.

Section Eight is also developing “The Good German,” an adaptation of the Joseph Kanon novel being eyed as a possible Clooney starring vehicle, with Paul Attanasio writing the script.

Since forming Section Eight, Soderbergh and Clooney have quickly become eclectic and prolific producers, even while Soderbergh directed “Erin Brockovich” and “Traffic,” and prepped the upcoming “How to Survive a Hotel Room Fire” for Miramax, and as Clooney prepares to make his directing debut at Miramax on “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.”

The latter film is a Section Eight/Mad Chance effort, which Soderbergh will produce with Andrew Lazar. Clooney co-stars in the comedy with Sam Rockwell.

Section Eight is also readying for production “Far From Heaven,” a USA Films project to be directed by Todd Haynes, and starring Julianne Moore and Dennis Quaid.

In addition, the production company is working on the gridiron film “Leatherheads,” a project that the partners began talking about at U even before Soderbergh first directed Clooney in “Out of Sight.” Soderbergh plans to helm the pic, with Clooney starring.

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