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Matt Damon News Column
OneXOne events, EW
  • On Sunday Matt and Lucy attended a cocktail party benefit on behalf of OneXOne. Matt introduced former President Bill Clinton at the event. Photos from Wireimage. Matt, Joey Adler, Marc Joubert and Gordon McKenna were also interviewed about OneXOne at The Star.

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    Matt Damon truly knows what it means to work both sides of the street.

    While he spent most of yesterday in press and promotional sessions for his latest film, The Informant, he managed to carve out a quiet hour over a lunch of organic chicken, beet salad and a Diet Coke at the Royal York to discuss his greatest passion: the charitable foundation called One X One.

    "Who isn't interested in trying to improve the lives of children around the world?" asked Damon. "I enjoy spending my time doing it."

    Damon admits that he wasn't able to do much during the formative years of his career but, once things clicked for him, "I was in more of a position when my status became secure. Then I could start focusing on this kind of stuff. That's when I had enough time to do it."

    He grins the patented Damon grin. "And enough people who would listen to me."

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    On water issues in Africa

    "That kind of depriviation isn't even on our radar in North America, but in Africa it's the central preoccupation of many people's lives. Every 15 seconds a child dies because of lack of clean water. There's two and a half billion people in the world without any toilet facilities."

    The usually cheerful Damon grows quiet before speaking again. "When I get back from one of these trips, I sit with my wife and finally, after hours and hours of silence, I'll start talking about what I've just seen and experienced.

    "You see the need. You feel it. And it does mark you."

  • Steven Soderbergh says the Liberace Project now has financial support and will film next summer in this video interview with David Poland. Soderbergh also discusses Matt's performance and acting abilities, firstly in relation to a particular scene (my transcribed comments are below).

    Soderbergh: He really nailed it. It’s a great piece of physical business. He is so smart.

    Even though he has been Oscar nominated, even though he has been in a string of successful movies. Yeah, I still feel like... he is... now, people are beginning to go he’s a really, really good actor, a good actor. There is not a director who’s worked with him who doesn’t want to repeat the experience.

    He jumps off the cliff, he is totally fearless. Well, the Liberace movie is going to be interesting. I think we’ve got the money. So it will be next summer.

  • Matt is interviewed by EW's Dave Karger about the Liberace project and buzz, but he spends most of the interview praising George Clooney and Vera Farmiga for their new film, Up in the air.

  • The photo below of Matt and Lucy at the OneXOne concert is from Citytv.com.

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  • Steven Soderbergh discusses the film and previous projects at The Daily Beast, where Joel McHale is also interviewed.

    Steven Soderbergh
    And when Soderbergh—who comes across like a precocious but slightly brooding graduate student—talks about the film, he seems, uncharacteristically, joyous. Compared to his epic, Che biopic (his last major film before he turned to The Informant!), which he says was “difficult at every stage,” he says that making The Informant! was “easy.”

    “It reminded me of Erin. The shoot was very fun, there were not big issues, and it was put together pretty quickly, then we finished it. Often, you feel suspicious of that, because there’s this assumption that the only good art has agony involved.”

    Joel McHale
    Asked what acting tips he picked up from the Oscar-winning Damon—who plays Mark Whitacre, the real-life Archer Daniels Midland whistleblower affected with a bipolar disorder—Joel cracks: “I learned to ‘Be better, Joel.’ Because this guy’s amazing.”
  • 13 comments or Leave a comment
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 14th, 2009 06:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
    What a run of reporting! I am always amazed and delighted at the diligence and enthusiasm you put into your site, but the last week or so has been beyond the pale! Thank you so much for all your hard work.

    We all know that Matt is a fine actor, but it makes me glad to be reminded that he is also large-souled in our everyday world. It seems clear that for Matt it's not about photo ops unless they can be used to focus attention on human suffering. I'm sure he does sit with Lucy recovering himself after encountering the desperation of so many others and then he actually tries to do something about it in ways he does not always get credit for. Sorry to ramble on, but even more than I deeply enjoy his films, I really respect this bright, caring human being. Thanks again for continuing to give us the window into his progress in the world.

    I. B.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: September 15th, 2009 05:04 am (UTC) (Link)
    I just love his commitment and passion. He doesn't need to get involved in these projects, but believes in them absolutely and will uses his limited time outside work and family to support them to the hilt.

    In this video interview Matt mentions that his next trip on behalf of water.org will be to Haiti next year. A good interview.

    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 14th, 2009 07:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
    By the way, I don't know if you saw this, but A.O. Scott (film critic for the N.Y. Times) and Michael Phillips (film critic for the Chicago Tribune) both gave Informant a "See It" on their nationally syndicated show, "At The Movies". They both discussed the subtlety of Matt's performance and the difficulty of classifying the film. These critics are far too experienced to be bewildered by Informant's tone as many less skilled critics seem to be. Good to see they really enjoyed the film.

    I. B.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: September 15th, 2009 12:42 am (UTC) (Link)
    Thanks for your comments I.B. I thought Informant was on the movie show last but hadn't found any comments about the show or the ratings they gave. That's good news.

    The rating on IMDB is still pretty high. As long as our expectations for this film are reasonable, I think, it will do well enough.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 16th, 2009 03:14 am (UTC) (Link)

    I saw that review on RT

    Rotten Tomatoes has quite a few reviews up. Take a look at it when you get a chance. I was pleasantly surprised at the number of good reviews up. I thought the critics weren't gonna get it at all. As for IMDB, I see they took those two nasty comments down. One had nothing to do with the movie at all. I don't mind the bad reviews so much but they are discouraging. However, that one review was calling him a traitor and all kind of craziness.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 16th, 2009 03:15 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: I saw that review on RT

    That comment was posted by me, Ilario1.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: September 16th, 2009 09:11 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: I saw that review on RT

    I'm staying away from Rotten Tomatoes because it scares me. I also can't look at IMDB close to a release or post-release due to the single-minded posters who get fixated on an issue and can't let it go.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 14th, 2009 08:23 pm (UTC) (Link)

    If it wasn't for this livejurnal

    I don't know how I would get my Matt news. Thank you so much. You are an Angel.

    Grateful always.


    P.S. I can't wait to see this movie.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 14th, 2009 08:24 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: If it wasn't for this livejournal

    Oops! Should have used the spellcheck.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: September 15th, 2009 04:48 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: If it wasn't for this livejournal

    Thanks Ilario. Happy with all the news, not the negative comments by bloggers (the usual ones) on various sites. Just hoping this movie does well...
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 15th, 2009 06:30 am (UTC) (Link)

    Full Episode of Matt on Letterman is up on Hulu.com


    Just put Letterman in the search.

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: September 15th, 2009 07:20 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Full Episode of Matt on Letterman is up on Hulu.com

    Just a note - Hulu isn't available for viewers outside the US. However, I think the episode is also available on YouTube.

    Edited at 2009-09-15 07:20 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: September 15th, 2009 05:53 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Full Episode of Matt on Letterman is up on Hulu.com

    I couldn't find the full episode on Youtube. Only clips there.
    13 comments or Leave a comment