January 15th, 2008

early pic side smile

Bourne, Casey Affleck, various

  • A thumbnail scan from Us magazine about the Matt/Lucy/Robert Downey Jr/Susan double date, thanks to Stacie. The item mentions that the group met up with Billy Joel and his wife Katie Lee for dessert. Matt and Lucy previously met Billy Joel and Katie Lee at the New York premiere of The Departed in 2006.

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  • Casey Affleck and wife Summer Phoenix have welcomed a second son, according to Celebrity Baby Blog.

  • A more credible version of the tipping excess story is here.

  • Matt may attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, due to be held from 23-27 January, according to Japan Today.

    [Japan's] Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda is planning to meet U2 rock singer Bono, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Hollywood actor Matt Damon on the sidelines of a major conference in Switzerland later this month to make a personal pitch for their attendance at an African development conference in Japan in May, a government source said Sunday.

  • Matthew McConnaughey refers to Matt in his upcoming Playboy article - this report from the Boston Herald:

    Cambridge homey-gone-Hollywood Matt Damon apparently scored some used Matthew McConaughey T-shirts for making fun of the "Fools Gold" star's habit of being photographed shirtless, during a visit to the "Late Show with David Letterman" last year.

    "I laughed," McConaughey says in the February issue of Playboy, about Damon's spot-on imitation. "I sent him some of my T-shirts. I said, 'Here, man. I'm not wearing them. Maybe you can use them."

  • An article on the impact of the Bourne series from IFC.com, including:

    Matt Damon's furrowed brow is saving Hollywood. Gracing each of the three insanely popular "Bourne" films, Damon's agitated wrinkles have implacably faced down an army of psychotic CIA stooges without so much as a sweat, and brought in nearly a billion dollars in box office globally.

    But the most surprising part of the trilogy's world domination is its critical reception. "The Bourne Identity," the first in the franchise, received grudging respect, but the recent "Ultimatum" is being said to "advance[s] the art of action filmmaking and will change it forever" — a quote not from an overheated fanboy after a press screening, but rather from Anne Thompson, the reliably insightful columnist for Variety.

    And it's not only Thompson who's contracted "Bourne" fever. It's also the hardcore cinephiles who vote on the Village Voice year-end film poll. "Ultimatum" placed 25th on the list, beating out critical darlings like "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead" and "Sweeney Todd." No other Hollywood blockbuster was even close — "The Bourne Ultimatum" probably outgrossed the rest of the list single-handedly.

    It's also achieved a mainstream cult — enough so that the IFC Center is showing the complete trilogy during its January Midnight series. How has "Bourne" become the only gargantuan Hollywood franchise that's impressed both mainstream and alternative presses (along with contrarian, smug bastards like myself)?

  • And EW selects The Bourne Ultimatum for Best Picture as one of the "Eight Oscar long-shots we love" here.

    Oscar's memory must be as short as Jason Bourne's. Action blockbusters like Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Fugitive were once legitimate Best Picture contenders. So why not THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM, which got some of last year's best reviews? It boasts a smart script, sharp editing, and Matt Damon's great, low-key turn. Plus, he can track you down.