How The 'Ocean's 8' Bonded While Filming Really Shows The Power Of An All-Female Cast

by Parry Ernsberger
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After spending long hours on set together and sharing some super-tight trailer arrangements, the on-screen girl gang in Ocean's 8 ended up forming close connections off-screen, too. And according to a recent New York Times interview with Sandra Bullock and Mindy Kaling tied to Ocean's 8, the all-female cast was able to bond over issues that had long-been considered secrets between successful women in Hollywood.

In 2001, Ocean's 11 — the first film in the Ocean's franchise, and a remake of the eponymous Rat Pack-starring movie from 1960 — was released, and the ensemble cast with stacked with some of the most famous men in Hollywood. Flash-forward to 2018, and the same can be said of Ocean's 8 — but with women, not men, of course. Another difference between the Ocean's movies, though, is where the two casts were in their lives while filming, which may have affected the way they connected in their off-time, according to Bullock.

"I could be wrong, but on the first Ocean’s [starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Matt Damon] hardly anyone was married, there was a bar on set, it was in Vegas, they planned outings," she recalled to the Times. "On our film, everyone was juggling one to two kids, dual careers — eight people’s full schedules. We didn’t even get to go to dinner until almost the entire thing was over. Those moments when we were able to get to know each other as people happened late night on the set, sharing information."

The 53-year-old actor — who plays Debbie Ocean, sister of George Clooney's Danny Ocean from previous Ocean's films — went on to explain that, despite being a Hollywood veteran, she'd never been around so many women who were open to discussing their careers, their lives, and how they manage to juggle it all. Bullock said,

"I realized there were so many questions I had and didn’t know who to ask in the journey of my career. And here I sat in a room with seven other women who might have those answers. We all threw everything into the pot, and by the time we left, I felt like we had gone through college together."

Meanwhile, Kaling, who plays Amita in Ocean's 8, told the Times that she felt like one of the reasons women haven't historically been encouraged to share information within the industry, is because they're expected to make success look easy. She explained,

"I feel like there is pressure for an actress to always be polished and beautiful. So you cannot share anything about what it took to get there because it’s supposed to be effortless."

After meeting and bonding with her Ocean's 8 co-stars, though, Kaling said that discussing the industry — as well as her personal life — ended up feeling more natural. She said, "[It] was nice, when it was the seventh hour of a 12-hour scene, to be able to look over to someone and go, 'What doctor do I go to? What was your business experience with this person? What are the logistics of having kids when you’re a single mom?'"

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Bullock recounted a similar experience in a May 2 interview with InStyle, and revealed how the all-female cast ended up finding little moments to vent in between scenes. "Cate [Blanchett] and I were, like, on the mother ship," she said. "We’d be getting spackled in the morning and sharing stuff like, 'I need pants for my son' or 'Hey, what can I do to get more sleep?'"

Fans are already pumped about the Ocean's 8 girl gang heist, which hits theaters on June 8. But now that it's clear that Bullock, Kaling, and the rest of the women in the film have each other's back in real life, too, its just going to make their on-screen connections that much more fun to watch.