Tribute's Bonnie Laufer talks to Matt Damon about joining the star-studded cast of Ocean's Eleven.


Q: Matt you were very good in this film and it was refreshing to see you, dare I say, as somewhat nerdy?
A: Yes, you can say that!

Q: What was your first reaction when you found out you were going to be in Ocean's Eleven, and then realized you were going to be starring with all of these people?
A: Well that was the thing. I could be kind of nerdy because these guys are so cool it won't matter! I like that I get called to duty in the movie. It's that thing — are you in or are you out right now— that's what it was kind of like. I was pretty late getting aboard on the movie and then I read the script and heard who was doing it and I went and met Steven.We met at some hotel bar and he was like, are you in or are you out? And I said I'm in man, I'll do anything.

Q: What makes Steven Soderbergh so unique as a director? Why do some many actors want to work with him so badly?
A: It's not one thing. He's a great storyteller, he gets the best out of his actors, and he creates an environment that is really fun to work in. He is incredibly driven and enthusiastic about work. He loves to do it and he loves to be there. You can't ask for more than that from a director. He gets the best from everyone he works with and he's going to get a great movie. He's the guy to want to work with and I was happy to do anything he wanted.

Q: You play a pickpocket in Ocean's Eleven. Did you get to observe pick pockets, did you try it out on your friends?
A: Actually we kind of cheated it for the movie. I was in Paris with a friend and I went on the subway with a video camera and he wore a suit and I had a hidden video camera because there are a lot of pick pockets in Paris and I was just trying to get him pick-pocketed (laughs) so that I could make a video, but he never got pick-pocketed.

Q: Nice friend, who was it, Ben (Affleck)?
A: No, it was another buddy of mine. He didn't look rich enough I guess. He looked like too much of a dirt bag. He had his best suit on, but I guess it wasn't good enough.

Q: Oh well. Nice to know you go to such lengths for you craft.
A: The scene in the movie is a cheat. We just had Mike Mallone, who is our prop guy — he's the guy I pick pocket, the guy reading the paper on the train. He stuck this billfold way out from this over coat that he had and it was just barely hidden from the camera and I just kind of snatched it. It was an easy grab.

Q: A few weekends ago you made a cameo appearance on Saturday Night Live when Gwyneth Paltrow hosted. You were such a good sport. Did you have a fun time?
A: It was so nerve racking. I bumped into Chris Kattan in New York and he said, hey man come on I'm doing this Mango sketch this weekend. Please, just come on and do a walk on. So, he talked me into it. I was terrified though. Going out there on live TV is scary!!! But now I can't wait to go back and host the show because I have never done it before. It was fun.

Q: So did they promise a hosting gig any time soon?
A: Well, no, I don't think they made any promises.

Q: Well, they are probably waiting until next summer when Bourne Identity comes out!
A: Right — let's hope so!