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"People mistake the fact that I'm fun for somebody who's not serious," he says.
"But I'm the opposite of what people think I am." That became clear Sept.
Ratner says the two, who have a 50-50 ownership of Rat Pac, became friends when the director befriended a woman who would become Packer's wife around the time Ratner's 2002 drama ), but then the Warners proposal came along.
[pagebreak] The Warners deal got underway in April, when Steven Mnuchin, chairman of Dune Capital, a private investment firm based in Los Angeles, heard that the studio was looking for an outside investor.
After meetings with Warners, he was introduced to Australian billionaire Packer at a dinner for Beatty hosted by producer-financier Arnon Milchan.
After that, he'll head home to Beverly Hills before moving on to Shanghai, where he'll take meetings with his Rat Pac Entertainment partner, billionaire James Packer ("We're gonna explore what we're gonna explore"). His leg twitches a mile a minute, and his nails are bitten to the quick.
Later, the two will share a vacation at Packer's polo horse ranch in Argentina. He admits to being a "germophobe" ("I'm more of a hypochondriac -- I grew up in a house of doctors") and confesses to a fear of planes ("I'm scared of flying -- terrified").
For Packer, "The [Warners] slate was a good opportunity," he says.