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Matt Damon News Column
People interview, Departed press conference, Trek debunked again
  • There's a new interview with Matt at People Online, including:

    PEOPLE: How did visiting Africa affect you?

    Damon: It's not some theory that someone's trying to explain to you. You're looking right at people who are living in extreme poverty, and it's really unnecessary. But what overwhelmed me the most was a sense of hope that I got, because I really felt like a lot of these problems are fixable. There are some really basic things that can be done that will have an unbelievable impact. So it's about educating people about that. Look, I'm learning too. I feel like I just started down this road – down what's going to be a lifelong trek – but it's most important that we all make it together.

    Were you happy with your Toronto fundraiser?

    I thought it was great. I mean, John Legend, I don't think there's anybody on the planet right now with a better voice. And how about Wyclef? When he got up (to sing with the African's Children Choir) – was that unbelievable! And how about when he turned to the kids and said to the translator, "Tell them to have fun," because they were on their best behavior. They've come from Uganda and they're trying to be polite and he's like, "No, no, no. Tell them to have fun!" And then they started dancing. My wife (Luciana) was crying just watching these kids because they were so happy.

  • Update: The People online interview is a longer version of the interview that appears in this week's magazine. The wonderful Sammie of Sammie 323's Effluvia has already scanned the page below:

    thumbnail: Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

  • Photos from The Departed press junket in New York today with Matt, Martin Scorsese and Leo from Yahoo:

    Image Hosted by ImageShack.us Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

  • Update: The Star Trek rumor can formally die now with confirmation that Matt has never been approached - from IESB:

    So, the question is has Matt Damon been offered the role of James T. Kirk in the upcoming and yet untitled Star Trek 11, has the idea even come across his plate?

    Well, today during The Departed press junket in New York, the IESB had the chance to ask Matt exactly that, "Is there any truth to the rumor that J.J. Abrams has approached you to play James T. Kirk in the upcoming Star Trek movie?"

    Damon was quick to say he hadn't heard anything about it. His publicist added that Abrams was joking when he said he would choose Matt to play Kirk and it's nothing serious. As we followed his publicist into the elevator we got a little more, "I think that it [the rumor] came out of a junket he [Abrams] was doing in Asia for Mission Impossible and from my understanding it was one of those hypothetical questions actors always get about who they'd like to work with and JJ threw Matt's name out there. But we've never heard anything on our end. I even called Endeavor, Matt's agency, to see if they had heard anything - they hadn't. There has been nothing from Paramount and I haven't heard anything from JJ's camp. I'm sorry there's nothing more interesting to report."
  • 8 comments or Leave a comment
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 15th, 2006 11:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
    So, the press junket has started for Departed. Glad to see Matt there. I feared that it would be Leo holding court! Let's hope Matt gets the coverage he deserves. Jan
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 16th, 2006 12:16 am (UTC) (Link)
    Thanks for the interview (and Jess aswell for posting link on other comment section!) Really sweet interview i think personally. Seems by just reading it, well actaully 'you can tell' by just reading it i think, like he really enjoyed Africa and Toronto fundrasier...proud...and happy for him! Glad he had great time.
    'My wife (Luciana) was crying just watching these kids because they were so happy'- Bless her, shes cool. See where shes coming from though! And 'Tell them to have fun' Main thing i think, cool they started dancing.
    The photos, there cool thanks for the updates and on other info from yesterday. Press notes for 'The Departed' cool to read those, interesting! And 'There are children everywhere' -Clooney! Funny at times!

    Anyhow thanks for all updates!!
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 16th, 2006 03:14 am (UTC) (Link)
    I wonder if they will have the press junket interview online in written form
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: September 16th, 2006 03:25 am (UTC) (Link)
    It depends on who attends (the interviewers). There will be excerpts of stories throughout the weekend (like the Star Trek bit), before TV interviews on Monday, although it's only Leo they're promoting at the moment.

    Closer to the film's release there will be longer interviews, and some usually transcribe the whole interview, like Paul Fischer, or at least the Hollywood Foreign Press section.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 16th, 2006 04:03 am (UTC) (Link)
    ok thanks
    From: jeff_in_utah Date: September 16th, 2006 10:16 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Matt ::hearts:: Africa, but Star Trek? Not so much.

    I agree with Cass that Matt really does seem to be enjoying the humanitarian work he's doing in Africa -- he's always struck me as a remarkably genuine person (especially in contrast to so many other Hollywood types), and I think he really has a heart for the people he's met in Africa and that it shows in the enthusiasm and joy he brings to things like his hosting duties at the fundraiser in Toronto. That Luciana got teary delighting in the kids' happiness tells me, also, that he truly found his soulmate in her. Go Team Matt!

    I also have to say that I, for one, am both somewhat relieved and somewhat disappointed to hear that the Cap'n Kirk rumors were just that -- rumors. When I first heard that J.J. Abrams might've been interested in casting Matt in William Shatner's old role, the guilty pleasure side of me thought it was a spot-on casting choice and I was really intrigued with the idea of seeing Matt kick intergalactic butt as Kirk (especially as directed by Abrams, who I think would do a great job with that material)...but at the same time, all along now, I've also been concerned that it might be a really poor career move for Matt, and I've dreaded the possibility that he might shoot himself in the foot by playing Kirk, especially given what a terrific job he's done, generally speaking, in picking such great projects to work in over the years.

    So I guess on balance I'm a little more relieved than not to learn that the Star Trek rumors were for naught, but it sure would've been fun to have seen him saving the universe from the deck of the USS Enterprise, just as a romp! Guess I'll just have to leave that to my imagination. :-)

    - Jeff in Salt Lake City
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 17th, 2006 05:00 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Matt ::hearts:: Africa, but Star Trek? Not so much.

    From what I can tell, he has not said that he would not do it if asked. He has just said that no one has contacted him at this point about playing that role. Maybe he will be interested if and when they do make a formal offer. Sometimes these rumors do turn out to be true. A lot of people said Oceans 13 was just a rumor. And now they are filming.
    From: jeff_in_utah Date: September 17th, 2006 09:28 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Matt ::hearts:: Africa, but Star Trek? Not so much.

    You're quite right, of course -- all good points. I should've put more thought into my subject line, instead of treating it like a throwaway, and not made it sound like Matt has made a declarative statement about the possibility of his being involved in a Star Trek movie, when, as you just reminded me, he hasn't even been made an offer to say yay or nay to.

    - Jeff in Salt Lake City
    8 comments or Leave a comment