• Golden Globe Awards

Oral History: Ben Affleck on Matt Damon, the Guy Code, and Marriage

For over 40 years the HFPA has recorded famous and celebrated actresses, actors and filmmakers. The world’s largest collection of its kind – over 10,000  items – is now in the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences Margaret Herrick Library.  Actor, filmmaker, and Golden Globe winner Benjamin Geza Affleck-Boldt was born on August 15, 1972, in Berkeley, California, and grew up in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His mother, Chris Anne (nee Boldt), is a school teacher, and his father, Timothy Byers Affleck, is a social worker.  Ben’s younger brother, actor and director Casey Affleck, is also a Golden Globe winner. 2001 was a busy year for Ben with Pearl Harbor, Daddy and Them and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back coming out one after the other. In this excerpt from one of his first HFPA press conferences, he talks about childhood friend Matt Damon, love and the rules of the Guy Code.“I think we have a pretty standard Guy Code which extends past my friendship with Matt  Damon.  It’s a sort of a finders keepers thing.  Possession being nine-tenths of the law.  I think once your friend dates a woman, the statute of limitations doesn’t really run out on that. It probably would hurt your feelings then to have your best friend pick up with her right after you brake up. So we understand that and never had to deal with this particular issue that’s dealt with in the movie (Pearl Harbor).My parents divorced, ‘I’m afraid of marriage’ is Matt’s song and dance with women. You know, I just think Matt hasn’t met the right girl. When he does, it’s not going to matter how many times his parents got divorced. He’s going to fall in love and he’s going to get married, like everybody else. I do think we get married a little bit later than in the past.  Culturally, I think a lot of people used to go to get married just so they could sleep together and I think that probably created a lot of bad marriages. That’s the reason why people are probably getting married later. They sleep together first and find if they are compatible second, although some people don’t believe in that and I am not taking sides either way. I do think that  particular cultural phenomenon is a better explanation for why people wait to get married.”