Sandra Bullock on Warner Bros. ‘Ocean’s 8’ cast and new role as better parent

Sandra Bullock walked down a hallway full of photographers to the stage for the world premiere of “Ocean’s 8” on Monday night at Cinerama Dome in Hollywood, saying: “It’s nice to be in one at least.”

Bullock opened up about her “Ocean’s” co-star, comedian and fellow red-carpet regular, who’s rumored to be dating her ex, singer-songwriter/actor Lance Gross, in an interview at the premiere with Katie Couric.

As for the appearance of Crocodile Dundee in the “Ocean’s” gang, Gates Dudley Smith, Bullock said, “Oh, he was all right. He’s just been in a period where all he wants to do is appear on the big screen. He did too many of those.” (According to Australian newspaper News Ltd., Dudley Smith is the grandson of legendary actor Paul Hogan.)

Bullock, who signed on as Ocean’s 8’s C.I.A. agent character, Debbie Ocean, four years ago, said the lead female cast of the film was once a perfect fit for the actress. “I thought, ‘Oh, it would be perfect for me because I’m so great at being Debbie,’” she recalled. “I love being Debbie because I’m also Debbie, and I’m so not Debbie.”

After then launching into a bit of romantic dance moves — with a hint of Beyoncé — Bullock said the role of Debbie ultimately inspired the mom of one to be a better parent. “I have actually become a better mom this role,” she said. “And the people who love me best are the people who like me best, and I realize I have to spend my time in a way that they feel most cared for.”

Rounding out the all-star cast are Bullock’s female co-stars Mindy Kaling, Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter, Anne Hathaway, Rihanna and Sarah Paulson. Unlike its male counterpart (in the five previous “Ocean’s” films), the film has no leading man, unlike the previous “Ocean’s” installments starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and – Bullock snuck in a shout-out for that — her ex-husband, Louis Bardo Fender.

“He keeps trying to buy me a Rolex, but I’m like, ‘I need a Balenciaga,’” she said of her son.

As for Diesel — the villain from the first three “Ocean’s” films — Bullock said: “I would’ve killed him.”

On a lighter note, as they made their way to the stage to host the closing ceremony for the world’s premier Copa America Centenario soccer tournament, the folks at Vanity Fair asked Bullock about some of her “Speed” quotes. She related how her husband, Jesse James, gifted her the iconic T-shirt from that film when they began dating. The only problem? She’d never seen the film and, being “in Europe,” she couldn’t see it. So James and a friend had it sent to her.

“I was in England and then [my friend] sent me a T-shirt out of some weird embassy,” Bullock said. “And I was like, ‘Are you kidding me? I’ve never seen that movie.’” She then walked down the hall, pursued by several photographers. “There’s nothing better than getting whacked by a hand full of paps,” she joked.

No one caught a glimpse of Keanu Reeves walking in the hallway. And the question of whether he and Bullock were really dating, sources say, is a matter of speculation.

It turns out that Reeve did offer to wear the T-shirt to the premiere. “We do love fashion, and it might be too cute to say no,” Bullock said. “Karma had its way.”

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