The überdirector's much-hyped eatery, Dive!, has, um, gone under.
The once-hip, yellow submarine-shaped delicatessan, which specialized in, of course, submarine sandwiches, closed its airlock-like doors this weekend, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Known for its underwater theme, replete with fish tanks, portholes, Jacques Cousteau-esque video footage and Titanic-priced sub-burgers, the Century City-based Dive! hit big when it launched, with lines snaking out the door and hours-long waiting lists.
Restaurant critics torpedoed the place, however. "So many bells and whistles, it's like eating in a pinball machine," the Zagat Survey opines, Dive! "can only appeal to kids under 10." The verdict on the place's cuisine: "mediocre food" at "sky-high prices."
There's no official word on why Spielberg shuttered Dive!, but a Times restaurant critic (jokingly, we think) suggests the closing came after "everyone in L.A. [had] reached their saturation point of eating there once."
The Las Vegas version of Dive!, like its L.A. counterpart bankrolled by Spielberg and DreamWorks pal Jeffrey Katzenberg, will apparently remain open.
Of course, Spielberg and Katzenberg aren't the only celebs who've had a rough go as restaurateurs.
Just last week Planet Hollywood announced a major overhaul of the chain in a last-ditch effort to stanch the flow of red ink (the Arnold-Bruce-Sly-backed eatery had losses in the neighborhood of $10-15 million in fourth quarter 1998). The eatery hopes to return to profitability by the turn of the millennium.
And the supermodel-themed Fashion Cafe--which continues to bleed cash--suffered a major setback last year when catwalker-cum-investor Claudia Schiffer bailed on the chain.