Matt Damon’s interview with Ben Affleck for Entertainment Weekly has provided many gems, including his thoughts on the future of theatrical movies. It also goes back to the start of his and Damon’s careers in the 1990s and their work with comedy movie director Kevin Smith.
Ben Affleck starred in three Kevin Smith films in that decade – Mallrats (1995), Chasing Amy and Dogma (1999). Matt Damon also appeared in the latter, in which he and Affleck play vengeful angels Bartleby and Loki.
Affleck says: “I liked Kevin. He’s funny and smart and charming. We got along.” Smith and Affleck have had an up-and-down relationship over the years, but Affleck recently appeared in Jay and Silent Bob Reboot (2019).
Damon then brings up the fact that Smith “saved” Good Will Hunting, the film that Affleck and Damon wrote and starred in in 1997. Damon says: “Kevin [who came in as a executive producer with his partner Scott Mosier] also saved Good Will Hunting. This is not a small side note. He is the reason Good Will Hunting got made. We were dead in the water, all the offers had evaporated.”
Affleck then confesses that he forgot to thank Smith in his Oscar acceptance speech; “I promised him I would thank him if we ever got an Oscar and promptly forgot. And then I told him, “If I ever win again I swear to God I’m going to thank you.” Forgot again.”
Affleck and Damon also discuss working with Robin Williams. Affleck says; “God, he was a wonderful guy. And funny! It was the first time I ever got to hang out with somebody that talented and that famous. I remember walking down the street in Boston with him, he had done Good Morning, Vietnam and Awakenings and Fisher King and all that. And all everybody in Boston would say was “Nanu, nanu.”
Damon and Affleck recently co-wrote and starred in their first film together since Good Will Hunting, Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel.
If you like movies based on true stories, such as Ben Affleck’s Argo, check out our guide to the best.