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The Trade - Matt Damon News Column
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The Trade
  • A new director has been announced for The Trade, although Matt and Ben will no longer be involved as actors (they are still producers) - from The Wrap.

    Jay Roach is attached to direct “The Trade,” the long-gestating project about New York Yankees players who swapped wives that Ben Affleck and Matt Damon are producing for Warner Bros., TheWrap has learned.

    Damon and Affleck are producing through their Pearl Street Films banner along with Jennifer Todd, though neither actor plans to star in the film. Warner Bros. executive Andrew Fischel will oversee the project for the studio.

  • Matt's interview on CNBC Meets is available here.

  • Photos of Matt and Lucy in LA this week are at Just Jared and Zimbio, including photos at a concert with friend Michele Merkin.

  • 30 comments or Leave a comment
    Comments
    loganx2 From: loganx2 Date: May 9th, 2014 12:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
    Do we think Matt will ever work again? It's kinda weird that there has been nothing on the horizon for so long. Maybe he is being more careful since he has had a string of bombs lately. He needs a hit...other than a tv hit.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 9th, 2014 01:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
    I do think he's being very wary about the next project, as all of his rules haven't resulted in successful movies, however good they were to make. I think The Foreigner would have been a great project, but he probably couldn't get the financing and it would have been too big a commitment with time outside LA. And there are probably home issues too, so maybe work isn't a priority at the moment.

    The television projects seem like a lot of work for a limited result.

    A side issue - Ben and Jen in trouble is the cover of Star magazine:
    http://www.celebitchy.com/364929/star_magazine_ben_affleck_jennifer_garner_are_falling_apart_fight_all_the_time/

    Edited at 2014-05-09 01:33 pm (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 9th, 2014 04:03 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Ben and Matt

    I don't buy the celebitchy story, totally out of character for Jennifer to go screaming through a casino. I think she's nothing if not careful. I imagine she has her hands full with Ben, as even he's admitted he has his demons, but it seems to me he loves her and his family.

    Didn't Matt say he wanted to spend time at home after the move so he could help the kids through the transition? He was only gone a couple of weeks with Interstellar. And they do have a lot of projects that they're producing and developing.

    On the other hand, he has had some marginal box office and some disappointments. $280 million for Elysium sure doesn't seem shabby to me, but they do weird math in Hollywood. (Twisting the numbers how ever they want to). I will never believe that Elysium didn't make a good profit, it was fairly modestly budgeted.

    But he never seems to get any credit. True Grit made over $250 million, too, and he didn't get any credit for that either, even though he was by far the biggest star in it. People said, "oh, it's the Coen's, that's why it was a hit", but they've had plenty of movies that did marginal box office.

    Most actors - Ryan Gosling for instance - would kill to have Matt's box office track record. If my recollection is correct in the last six or seven years he has tended to bring in around $150 million internationally per film. And these are original concepts, not sequels or comic books. Promised Land was his only total box office bomb EVER. And that's because an entire industry targeted it. But it was an important film to make, so it has an important secondary life. I frequently see it sited in articles about fracking. The industry is still afraid of it and regular people faced with the issue want to see it. So it will echo around for a looooooonnnnng time. A conservative attacked it again on CNN just the other day.

    And that only continues to add to Matt's reputation as a person that smart, caring people respect. In the whole grand scheme of things, that's what matters.

    But in the short run, I concede that he's not particularly "hot" in Hollywood terms. But the short run is just that. The short run. He's always had a long view. Personally I'd really like to see him play a baddie in a good play, although that's probably out of the cards since they moved.

    Given his box office I can't believe he could be off "the list".

    Sorry to be so verbose. :-/
    Paula


    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 10th, 2014 01:13 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Ben and Matt

    Well said! All actors careers haeve peaks and troughs. We don't know what projects Matt is being offered, it's all based on gossip anyway. Marcia
    From: cindiest Date: May 10th, 2014 01:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
    It's so nice that they're always holding hands.
    Reo Roma From: Reo Roma Date: May 10th, 2014 09:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
    I like all of Matt's work...maybe he'll do another Ocean 14 movie I like those with him, George and Brad and all those other good actors ;)
    Elena
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 11th, 2014 05:39 am (UTC) (Link)

    Photo

    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 11th, 2014 07:27 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Photo

    Oh! So cool and so nice! Lovely.
    B.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 11th, 2014 11:59 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Photo

    Lol, he is such a sweetheart, but seriously, Matt, did you bring no other hats with you from NY?
    Paula
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 11th, 2014 09:18 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Nancy

    A quote from Nancy for Mother's Day:

    http://www.bostonmagazine.com/news/article/2014/05/09/mothers-day-celebrities-moms/

    Nancy Carlsson-Paige
    Mother of Matt Damon, Actor

    “I think the best advice I gave to Matt was that he, more than anyone else, knew what was best for him. Listen to others’ advice and suggestions along the way, I would tell him, but ultimately, your own inner wisdom and integrity are your best guides through life.”
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 12th, 2014 12:18 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Family photos

    Matt doesn't seem to have been at George's engagement party in Malibu, but here are photos of Matt, Lucy and kids with a friend on Mother's Day:

    http://www.tpgimages.com/editorial_sub.php?id=3875851

    Edited at 2014-05-12 12:19 pm (UTC)
    From: cindiest Date: May 12th, 2014 06:58 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Family photos

    Thank you.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 13th, 2014 02:48 am (UTC) (Link)

    Photo

    Matt at Culver Studios in LA today - photo shoot? Update: it was apparently a shoot with Matt and Ben.

    http://webbygram.com/photo/719047550472623228_285500580/

    A photographer is also posting that Casey Affleck has contacted him for a photo shoot with Matt in Boston in June. The Massachusetts General Hospital One Hundred event is on 10 June (Matt is not yet announced as hosting, but when John Krasinski hosted it last year Matt sent a video saying he would be back next year).

    Edited at 2014-05-13 03:00 am (UTC)
    4mattdamon From: 4mattdamon Date: May 13th, 2014 07:17 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Photo

    6 degrees of separation from Matt today, lol, i was next door at SONY studios today. how ironic. Cuver Studios is next door to SONY studios. it's a crazy life.
    see he looks trim and fit, getting back to the convo in a prior thread. i wonder if the shoot was for Omaze. I know the gifts were sent out for the big donations like a month ago, but those of us with smaller donations were supposed to get a digital thank you from them that Omaze told me is still coming.
    Gregory

    Edited at 2014-05-13 08:00 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 13th, 2014 03:29 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Photo

    Lol, Gregory, how funny.

    I agree that he's looking like he's in great shape (Lucy looks great, too). Maybe a result of a more active lifestyle in warm California. Bike riding will get you in great shape, as long as you're not breaking bones.

    Paula
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 13th, 2014 09:41 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Photo

    It was apparently for a Project Greenlight promo.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 13th, 2014 11:16 pm (UTC) (Link)

    The Martian

    Ridley Scott at age 77 in talks for The Martian (the bad project moves ahead?)

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/ridley-scott-direct-matt-damon-703887
    loganx2 From: loganx2 Date: May 13th, 2014 11:47 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    Im not sure what his age has to do with anything. Eastwood is older and if Matt is going to make this movie Im glad it's going to be with someone like Ridley he is great with sci-fi. it makes me more interested in it. I mean it will probably still be terrible because Matt's choices these days are not great, but it's something i guess. I still wish he was still in the RFK movie. I wonder what happened.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 14th, 2014 01:04 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    This is FABULOUS news! Scott is one of a tiny handful of legitimately great, classy action directors. He has lots of experience in creating convincing otherworldly situations. He knows how to ratchet tension to an extreme degree. He is beyond question a great director, and can create atmosphere in spades (which will be important to this project). Ageism feels completely out of place in this news. Scott certainly continues to hold the confidence of the most important actors, having recently worked with Fassbender, Bale, and DiCaprio.

    There are very few directors I would be more excited to see helm this project. Yay!

    Such are the ups and downs of fandom. A few days ago we were concerned, and now I'm thrilled. Maybe Matt is excited too - he's already working out - lol. Given the studio seems to be fast tracking this, might we see a shoot date announced soon?
    Paula
    From: cindiest Date: May 14th, 2014 04:53 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    I'm crossing my fingers big time. Do you ever watch Ridley Scott's Profits of Science Fiction? It's super current and super good.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 14th, 2014 01:57 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    Ridley Scott--all you need to say is, "Bladerunner." You don't even have to mention all the other great films he's made. Many of us think "Bladerunner" is the best scifi film of all time.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 14th, 2014 02:38 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    But I think of his recent movie, The Counselor, which was generally regarded as incomprehensible and dreadful.

    I think the last film of his that I liked was White Squall. I'm not a fan of any of his movies. Apparently The Martain book is quite funny. I'll search it out.

    Paul Greengrass was apparently in the mix to direct.
    http://www.deadline.com/2014/05/roundup-ridley-scott-ponders-martian-jessica-chastain-eyeing-mission-imposible-5-peter-sarsgaard-and-winona-ryder-eye-experimenter/

    Edited at 2014-05-14 02:54 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 14th, 2014 02:58 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Re: The Martian

    Wow, not a fan of any of his movies? Thelma and Louise? Blade Runner? Black Hawk Down? Alien? Gladiator? None of them? Wow.

    The Counselor was always a tough sell due to it's metaphorical dialogue, which was the incomprehensible part to people. What I especially respect about Scott is that he's made consummate movies but continued to remain ambitious and done different sorts of movies. I mean, the thing he's just shot with Bale has an enormous scale. And he's constantly busy, but directs relatively few projects, which must mean he really believes in the material.

    I have read an in-depth description if the book and the character Matt plays is apparently brilliant but caustic and funny. Before I was tentative but now I am really looking forward to this project.
    Paula
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 14th, 2014 04:00 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    I really don't like his choices of movies, and never liked Blade Runner, Alien etc. Hate Gladiator and that wine movie, or any of his guns and action epics. It either seems to be fluff or macho bull* that I try to watch and have no interest in, normally starring a Mark Wahlberg equivalent. (I was that person in film studies classes at uni objecting to Tarantino.)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 14th, 2014 04:12 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    Ok, to each her own. I agree about Tarantino, though!
    Paula
    From: cindiest Date: May 14th, 2014 04:50 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    I 'm looking forward to it. Always was, though, but now even more.
    From: cindiest Date: May 14th, 2014 04:50 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: The Martian

    I hope so!
    From: cindiest Date: May 14th, 2014 05:00 am (UTC) (Link)
    People have been referring to Matt's poor choices of late. I don't believe he's made poor choices. Some movies just don't pan out. It happens for many seen and unseen reasons. Choosing to do Monuments Men was a good bet, so was Elysium. In my opinion the problem with Promised Land was that the writing was rushed, and there was no one to shoot Matt down when needed. With a little more time and some adjustments it could've much better. But to be clear, none of his movies have been bad. And you can't disregard Behind the Candelabra. It was totally edgy, got rave reviews and the same reasons it didn't go to the big screen are the same things that reflect a bold choice by Matt and not a bad one. He was all over the award season. And no studio head is going to blame Matt Damon for Elysium or Monuments Men. They're his friends and they're smart. They know that Elysium did a respectable amount for an original sci-fi film. There's a shift in moviegoers picks that the studios are aware. That made money in spite of many things. One of the major magazines even retracted their statement that Elysium didn't do well, by saying, hey it performed after all. And Monuments Men completely fell on Clooney's shoulders. But it was his most successful film. I don't think it's as bleak as some folks seem to be worrying.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 14th, 2014 06:36 am (UTC) (Link)
    I think it's often about perception rather than reality. And the perception is that his recent films haven't done well. I'm not concerned because it's a natural dip in every actor's career. It takes one successful film to sometimes be back on top (I remember reading the worried comments from fans on Heath Ledger sites before his 'comeback'.)

    And the current environment for franchises, comic book films and low quality output isn't what Matt's career was based on. There are very few films out there I wish Matt had done, and he has still got credibility and hasn't sold out. It's a bad time for quality, mid-range movies, and the outlook is poor for these films being financially successful in the future, but as always, it depends on the quality of the film.
    From: cindiest Date: May 14th, 2014 04:01 pm (UTC) (Link)
    Well said. You're right. I hadn't looked at like that at all.
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