Ben Affleck : Actor and Director
Ben Affleck: The Early Years
Ben Affleck was born Benjamin Geza Affleck-Boldt on August 15, 1972 in Berkeley, California. Ben's middle name Geza is in honor of a family friend who survived the Holocaust. When Ben was only two years old his family moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts. Affleck's father, Tim Affleck, was a jack of all trades and was employed in various professions through out Ben's life. At one point his father was an actor, an auto mechanic, a carpenter, a bookie, an electrician, a bartender and a janitor at Harvard University. Affleck's mother, Chris Affleck, was a school teacher.
However, by the time Affleck turned eleven, his parents had divorced due to his father alcoholism. Affleck and his younger brother Casey continued living with their mother and lost touch with their father as they went through their teens. It wouldn't be until his father completed rehab and became a addiction counselor that Ben and Casey Affleck re-connected with their father in their adult years.
It was in Affleck's childhood when he would meet a very special boy that would change his future forever. When Affleck was eight, he befriended a young boy that lived two blocks away. The young boy was 10 year old Matt Damon. The two instantly became great friends and had a special bromance all through high school. Both Affleck and Damon had a love for the arts and both hoped to be an actor in the future. Affleck and Damon began working a variety of jobs in construction and as theater ushers. They created a joint bank account and saved their money up together to pay for tickets to New York for auditions.
Affleck Goes To College
Benjamin Affleck was an intelligent boy, however, he did not put a lot of effort forth in school and often missed a lot of days. His SATs scores were good, so he was able to get into a decent college, however, falling in love in his teens he decided to follow a girl to The University of Vermont where Affleck took Spanish classes. Soon realizing he had made a big mistake, Affleck left the University of Vermont without any credits and instead moved to Los Angeles to attend the Occidental College. Affleck attended Occidental College for a little over a year and half, but soon dropped out when one of his professors ridiculed and humiliated him in front of classmates for one of his initial drafts of "Good Will Hunting."
Hitting the Big Time
As a child Affleck had some success in the acting profession. He appeared in a variety of commercials, an independent film, and a TV movie. Affleck's biggest break as a child was starring on "The Voyage of the Mimi" and "The Second Voyage of the Mimi" but Affleck still hadn't hit the big time.
Soon Affleck was cast in "School Ties" (1992), "Dazed and Confused" (1993) and "Mallrats"(1995). However, Affleck was afraid that he was being type casted because he continued to receive roles which were the bully, or the bad guy, or jerk in the movie. After appearing in "Mallrats", Affleck starred in Kevin Smith's "Chasing Amy" (1997) which would be the start of a beautiful career.
After "Dare Devil" Affleck starred in a row of flops including "Jersey Girl" and one of the most terrible movies ever created of all time. I mean this movie WAS BAD! TERRIBLE! AWFUL! INSULTING! RUDE! JUST REALLY BAD! It went by the name of "Gigli." Affleck starred with then girlfriend/soon to be fiancé Jennifer Lopez in this rotten and god awful movie.
Not long after beginning his relationship with Jennifer Lopez did Affleck's star begin to fall from the spotlight. He became more famous as one half of the couple known as "Bennifer" than as an actor and Oscar winner. Affleck was seen as a joke in Hollywood. After breaking off his engagement with Jennifer Lopez it seemed like Affleck had gotten some sense knocked back into him and starred in "Hollywoodland", which Affleck received positive reviews for. He then starred in "Smokin Aces", "Gone Baby Gone", "He's Just Not That Into You", "State of Play" and "The Town." "Gone Baby Gone" was Affleck's directorial debut and he followed it with "The Town." In each movie Affleck both starred in and directed the movies. Following his success with his directed movies, Affleck went on to direct and star in "Argo," which won Affleck another Oscar as Producer for "Argo." Affleck also won a BAFTA award for his direction and as an acto in a lead role.
In 1997 Affleck became a name known in Hollywood when his and Matt Damon's Orginial Screenplay "Good Will Hunting" received an Academy Award. Suddenly, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon were Oscar winners and instant superstars but Affleck still needed to truly break out in a movie.
Finally in 1998, Affleck was cast in the blockbuster hit "Armageddon" with Bruce Willis. Even though the movie was judged very negatively from the critics it went on to make $558 million. Affleck then went on to star in "Shakespeare in Love", "Forces of Nature", "Bounce" and "Reindeer Games."
Affleck hit gold again at the box office when appearing in "Pearl Harbor", which made over $400 million dollars worldwide, but once again Affleck's blockbuster hit was criticized by the movie reviewers. He followed the success of "Pearl Harbor" with "The Sum of All Fears", "Changing Lanes", and "Dare Devil."
While starring in "Dare Devil", Affleck re-teamed with Jennifer Garner from their previous movie "Pearl Harbor." Eventually, Affleck and Garner would marry and have three children together. Affleck was very excited about the story of "Dare Devil" being told but unfortunately the movie did not become as big of a hit as everyone hoped it would be and even though it made over $179 million dollars, it was still seen as a flop.
Affleck began dating Jennifer Garner in 2004 after they filmed "Dare Devil" together. The two became engaged in 2005 and were married in June of 2005. The two married in front of only one guest in Turks and Caicos. The couple have three children Violet Ann (December 2005), Seraphina Rose (Jan. 2009) and Samuel Garner (Feb. 2012).
Prior to marrying Garner, Affleck dated Gwyneth Paltrow from 1997 - 1999 and then began dating Jennifer Lopez, turning into Bennifer. The two began dating in 2001 until Jan. 2004.
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The Sum of All Fears
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Fun With Affleck
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