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Matt Damon News Column
Memorial service for Anthony Minghella, various
  • Matt attended a memorial service for director Anthony Minghella in London on Saturday. The first report was from Jeffrey Wells at Hollywood Elsewhere, including:

    An "amazing gathering of film luminaries" are attending a weekend of mourning in and around London for the late director Anthony Minghella. A three-hour Catholic service was held this afternoon at St. Thomas More church in Swiss Cottage, a suburb of London. Elegant and heartfelt words were spoken about Minghella by Talented Mr. Ripley costars Matt Damon and Jude Law, English Patient author Michael Ondaatje and costar Juliette Binoche, and Minghella's producing colleague Harvey Weinstein (who also delivered a message on behalf of the ailing Sydney Pollack, who was Minghella's producing partner).

    Dominic Minghella (the director's brother), Cold Mountain costar Renee Zellweger and Truly Madly Deeply costars Alan Rickman and Juliet Stevenson also attended. Gordon Brown and Tony Blair, the present and former Prime Minister of the UK, were there as well. Ditto widow Carolyn Minghella, daughter Hannah Minghella, an exec at Sony, and son Max Minghella, an actor.

  • A tribute by Harvey Weinstein to Minghella at the LA Times includes these lines:

    " 'Ripley' has to be extraordinary," Anthony said about his next movie, "The Talented Mr. Ripley," the adaptation of the Patricia Highsmith novel. "Perhaps we should cast someone the audience doesn't know." We showed up with a VHS rough cut of a movie Bob and I were making called "Good Will Hunting." Anthony sat transfixed by Matt Damon and when it was over said, "He's Ripley."

  • Photos of Matt having fun with the paparazzi on Thursday is at Bauer Griffin Online.

  • A spoof ad by Matt and Sarah Silverman to celebrate Jimmy Kimmel's 1,000th show is here, and discussed at People.

  • Matt is a finalist for the 2008 Time 100.

    Matt Damon
    AGE: 37
    PRO: Damon's Jason Bourne, even more than Dan Craig's Bond, has reinvented the espionage thriller for a deracinated cameraphone age. Notably absent from the tabs, Damon brings a touch of class to everything he does and seems in complete control of his career, from the prestige projects to the rent checks. He's that Hollywood rarity: a serious actor who's not self-serious. (Just ask Sarah Silverman.)
    CON: Damon's great, the Bourne movies are fantastic, but the phrase "Ooh! Let's go see that new Matt Damon movie!" has never been uttered outside of his agent's office. Is his non-Bourne career overly dependent on fratty collabs, Brad Pitt and Clooney?

  • Mark Whitacre (the subject of The Informant) discusses his life and the upcoming movie here, including:

    "It's like I was two people," Whitacre said. "I assume that's why they chose Matt Damon for the movie, because he plays those roles that have such psychological intensity. In the 'Bourne' movies, he doesn't even know who he is.

    "When you're working for three years undercover, you get to the point where you don't know who you are. There was one point where my wife said to me, 'Who do you work for now?'"

  • Filming of The Informant in Decatur, Illinois, is reportedly scheduled for 3-23 May, shooting six days a week. Details from the Herald-Review.

  • A trailer for The People Speak is at YouTube, as referenced by the Boston Herald.
  • 7 comments or Leave a comment
    From: (Anonymous) Date: April 6th, 2008 05:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
    Hardly anyone doubts anymore that Matt is an exceptionally accomplished actor. I have heard people say, "Let's go see the new Matt Damon movie." But most say "Let's go see "The Good Shepherd" or "The Talented Mr. Ripley", etc. The fact is, that's exactly the outcome Matt seems to prize above all others; he is not what is important--the film is. That he is famous and maybe even beloved is indisputable considering the greeting he gets at public appearances and on his rare television excursions. The cult of Hollywood personality may have its rewards for the individual, but it is important that when the squealing and fainting stop as it must for all entertainers (I'm thinking now of the greatest exemplars of world-wide ecstatic fame: the Beatles)there be something really solid to look at in terms of their work. For the Beatles, their catalog is solid artistic gold. For Matt, the same thing is true. For many of us, if we know Matt is in a film, we will be sure to see it because we know the film will be as well made as the collaboration among star, director, writer, cinematographer etc, could be given Matt's penchant for quiet quality control. So for Time, perhaps they should consider that Matt is at a different level of film worth. He's too aware of the art he's a part of to distract us by coloring it with his private and public personality. Sure, there's all that fun in the "Ocean" films and cameos like the almost anonymous bit in "Eurotrip" (most critics admitted they didn't even know it was Matt at first). First and foremost, though, he's a chameleon of film, and that's one of the things I like best about him. He's got his artistic priorities right. Go Matt!
    From: novice_41 Date: April 6th, 2008 08:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
    wow! well said. fantastic to see people talk like this from time to time. you're damn right... a chameleon! an exceptional intelligent and charismatic one ~ IMHO.

    “The People Speak,” Zinn's documentary will be absolute interesting. saw previews features from Viggo Mortensen and must say he was grandiose. hope this will be an international release. can hardly wait the result.

    hehehe... S & M's full-page ad was another slap in the face of Kimmel. guess his ego can't bear this. ;)

    thx felicity!!! *2thumbsup*
    From: (Anonymous) Date: April 7th, 2008 08:37 am (UTC) (Link)
    What a fantastic comment, agree with everything you've written.

    Hollywood constantly put Matt down because to them he's 'dull' all I can say is that I could do with a lot more 'boring' actors like him around.

    Come on Matt, get it together, cast of the wife the kids the happy marriage the social conscience etc. that's so last century.

    Get out there snort cocaine like its going out of fashion, get yourself blinged up, get the paparrazi to snap you staggering out of nightclubs with a busty blonde on each arm off your face with booze, and make movies by numbers, phone in your acting roles whilst taking home a cheque large enough to wipe out the debt of the developing world; that's what real movie stars do, and you are clearly not rising to the challenge. Give Time, Variety and all these other idiotic magazines what they want, and then they will respect you and stop thinking of you as such a loser. Marcia

    From: (Anonymous) Date: April 7th, 2008 09:29 am (UTC) (Link)
    Sorry about the appalling grammar Felicity, but that comment from Time and the LA Times article made me so furious I almost had steam coming out of my ears!

    The memorial for Anthony Minghella sounded really lovely, and I think it's great that Matt was able to attend and take part. M
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: April 7th, 2008 10:35 am (UTC) (Link)
    Not a problem Marcia. I knew people were going to have issues with the comments in Time, but that's one misguided perspective. And people just don't look beyond Bourne.

    I'm amazed at the lack of coverage for the Minghella memorial. No photos, some flawed local reports, but no decent articles yet by established publications.

    Some comments about Matt by Clooney in a few new articles:



    From: (Anonymous) Date: April 7th, 2008 11:31 am (UTC) (Link)
    For me it isn't so much that people who write about the industry can only think of him in terms of Jason Bourne, though that's bad enough it's just that he's so often mentioned in a negative way when compared to his peers.

    It's this infantile idea that if you live life, jumping and screaming and waving your arms about shrieking 'look at me, look at me' like a 14 year old with attention deficit disorder and a frontal lobotomy, you are considered automatically more interesting than someone who lives their life like a grown up.

    I'm sure Matt couldn't care less, lets face it he's got a great life; I just wish entertainment journalists would occasionally use some of the superlatives when they write about him that they use so liberally when discussing the 'talents' of actors like Pitt or Di Caprio for example or even Clooney. My final comment on the matter.

    I got the Times on Saturday and Sunday and there wasn't a single mention of Anthony Minghella's funeral, pretty disgusting I think, I didn't watch any TV news at the weekend it might have got a mention there. He wasn't part of the Establishment (usual thing, didn't go to public school so not 'one of us'). And as nice as the article you posted mentioning some of those who attended his funeral was, why mention his family last almost like an after thought. Very odd. M
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: April 8th, 2008 02:32 am (UTC) (Link)

    New photos

    Matt attended a dinner in honor of George Clooney in London (Monday night). Photos are at WENN and Getty Images - I'll have them up later.
    7 comments or Leave a comment