Damon and Affleck first grew to become pals when their moms launched them. (Damon’s was a professor of childhood schooling and Affleck’s was a schoolteacher.) On the time Affleck was eight years old and Damon was ten. As the 2 lived a few blocks away from each other in Cambridge, Massachusetts, they spent loads of time collectively as youngsters they usually additionally attended the identical highschool.
The pair shot to stardom with their 1997 film Good Will Hunting, which starred Damon because the title character and featured Affleck as Will’s greatest good friend. The film went on to obtain acclaim, and the pair gained an Academy Award for co-writing the film’s screenplay. Along with this accomplishment, the 2 buddies have constantly supported and inspired one another over the course of their lives.
Their friendship was cemented after Affleck defended Damon in a battle
Whereas on Conan in 2019, Damon shared that he’d as soon as been on the verge of getting overwhelmed up by an even bigger child. On the final second, a school-age Affleck “tackled this dude off of me. Like, out of nowhere.” For Damon, Affleck hadn’t solely spared him from a battle, he’d cemented their friendship. “I remember that was a big moment. Like, ‘This guy will put himself in a really bad spot for me. This is a good friend.'” In addition they got here by way of for one another by defending their option to pursue appearing careers to oldsters who, given the low odds of success within the leisure business, have been understandably fearful.
Affleck started appearing at a younger age, as a household good friend was a casting director and launched him to the business. However Damon helped his good friend grow to be critical concerning the craft. Affleck defined to Parade journal in 2007, “Before Matt, I was by myself. Acting was a solo activity where I’d just go off and do something, act in a little TV show or something, and no one understood it. None of the other kids knew what it was I did, how it worked, or anything. All of a sudden I had this friend, Matt, and he gets it and wants to do it and thinks it’s interesting and wants to talk about it. Soon both of us are doing it.”
The pair held ‘enterprise lunches’ in highschool to plan their future
Damon has stated that filmmaking grew to become a shared pursuit for the 2 pals. “We were both in love with the same thing — acting and filmmaking. I think we fed on each other’s obsession during really formative, important years and that bonded us for life,” Damon advised ET Online. In keeping with Damon’s brother, the 2 have been “drama geeks” in highschool. Throughout highschool, they shared what they known as “business lunches” to work on plans for the longer term, and as teenagers, they often traveled collectively for auditions in New York Metropolis.
When it was time to go to varsity — Harvard College for Damon and, initially, the College of Vermont for Affleck — the 2 remained shut. Affleck as soon as defined in Interview magazine, “Matt and I had identical interests, so whether we ended up successful or making hot dogs at Dodgers games, we knew we’d end up doing the same sort of thing. The remaining friends part was pretty consistent. We saw each other all the time, we talked on the phone all the time.” After they each left college to attempt to make it as actors, they typically lived together.
Just a few years later, their belief and respect for each other allowed Damon and Affleck to co-write the script for Good Will Looking, after which reap the rewards of that breakout hit.
Early on, Damon and Affleck would pool their incomes
Damon and Affleck did greater than encourage one another to behave — they have been there for each other financially. “Ben Affleck and I actually had a joint bank account, and the bank account was money that we’d made doing local commercials and we could only use it on trips to New York to audition,” Damon stated on CNN in 2011. He has said that this perspective was solely pure, as their friendship had at all times adopted these guidelines. “If one kid had enough for a candy bar, then the candy bar was bought and split in half — that’s just the way it’s been,” he defined to Interview.
After they’d moved on from being children shooting commercials to attempting to outlive on their very own as struggling actors, Damon and Affleck nonetheless pooled incomes. If one acquired a task, that cash was out there to the opposite till the following half got here in.
With the success of Good Will Looking, they have been in a position to put that coaching into apply. The 2 began a manufacturing firm and created the truth present Venture Greenlight to supply aspiring filmmakers with the chance to see their initiatives grow to be actuality.
The pair is aware of methods to have enjoyable by way of life’s highs and lows
Rising up, Damon and Affleck had enjoyable enjoying Little League or Dungeons and Dragons. In later years, they’d hand around in Harvard Sq.. After they have been older, Damon has revealed they’d often “end up at the same bar every night with the same people telling the same old jokes.”
The pair additionally loved their time as struggling actors. “Those times were fun!” Affleck advised People. “We had a great time! We were young, we didn’t have the kinds of fears that you have when you get into your forties if you haven’t gotten to where you want to go. We were in our twenties and we just had a blast!”
And being profitable Hollywood stars hasn’t stored the 2 from indulging in the identical type of camaraderie. In a video to lift cash for a charity that provided the possibility for somebody to go on “a best friend double date” with them, Damon teased his good friend: “Ben Affleck’s left eye twitches each time you say the phrase Gigli.” This was a reference to the 2003 film — co-starring Jennifer Lopez, whose romance with Affleck acquired nonstop tabloid consideration — that grew to become a infamous flop. In the identical video, Affleck famous “how incredibly short Matt Damon is.” In 2016, Affleck smuggled Damon onto the set of Jimmy Kimmel Live! in defiance of the humorous “feud” between Kimmel and Damon.
They nonetheless have one another’s backs by way of life’s largest modifications
Many years might have handed since they labored collectively on Good Will Looking, however they proceed to encourage and respect each other’s work. Damon has stated he’d like to be directed by his good friend. Nonetheless, he defined to ET On-line that Affleck tends to maintain his greatest roles near house: “He’s a brilliant director, but the problem is that he always gives the best parts to himself. So until he starts including the rest of us, I think we just have to go watch him be great in his movies.”
The pair has additionally remained shut as they made the transition from single bachelors to married household males. Affleck would possibly’ve missed Damon’s City Hall wedding in 2005, however he later attended his vow renewal in St. Lucia. Their households, together with Affleck’s youthful brother Casey, have gone snowboarding collectively. For a time, they have been neighbors when Damon moved into a house on the same street as Affleck in Pacific Palisades, California.
Years later, the 2 nonetheless have one another’s backs. In 2015, Damon spoke up for his good friend in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter: “It was like he was being solid in a task, that he was a talentless type of meathead, along with his entire relationship with Jennifer Lopez. He simply acquired solid as this individual that he wasn’t. It was simply actually painful. It was painful to be his good friend, as a result of it wasn’t honest, you recognize? To my thoughts, no one actually acquired him in any respect. And thru his work, he climbed from the underside of the mountain all the best way again as much as the highest and previous the place both of us had ever been.”
Damon has additionally been there for his friend at different tough moments, together with when Affleck’s marriage to Jennifer Garner fell aside. And Affleck has turned to Damon for assist when he is struggled with addiction. As Affleck advised Entertainment Tonight, “I can’t tell you how valuable it is to have somebody who’s been through things with you, ups and downs, who knows what your life experience is like, who can identify with that.”
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