While it's been understood for a while now that Steven Soderbergh
and George Clooney
were going to break up, the official date is now set: Come August 1
, that two-timing Clooney will (in a business sense, of course) move in with Good Night, and Good Luck
writing and producing partner Grant Heslov
and create a new label, called Smoke House. Clooney's departure will mean the end of new projects from Section 8, the production company that he and Soderbergh started in 2000 "with an eye toward nurturing offbeat and 'message' movies and TV projects." Don't worry about Steve, though -- in fact, his desire to focus more on directing and less on the business side of movie-making was one of the reasons for the shake-up. Despite the change of partner and office space, the move probably isn't that big of a change for Clooney: Smoke House, like Section 8, will be based on the Warner's lot, and the new company has already signed a long-term first-look deal with the studio. Plus, Heslov has been involved in Section 8 almost from the beginning, so this is more of a practical change than a revolution in focus or interest.