Hereafter provided Eastwood with a second opportunity, after Invictus, to work with Matt Damon, whom he likes as an actor and clearly believes to be suited to his no-nonsense style of directing.
"You don't catch him acting a lot," Eastwood says. "He seems to be a very real guy, and he's not afraid to play a real guy, and I think he's very good. [Hereafter] needed somebody with a special way to do this character. Matt's a nice looking fellow but he looks like an everyman. He can portray an everyman."
If I was ever in trouble the one call I’d make would be to Matt Damon.
We’ve been friends for 30 years. I can’t believe I’m old enough to say I’ve had a friend for 30 years. But he is a friend, and a partner in a company we have together. He saw The Town in five different versions and each time he saw it he presented me with pages and pages of very smart notes. I’ve got to a stage in life where I have learnt who my real friends are. You don’t need many, you just need good, solid friends. My brother, Casey, is another one and my godfather is a really brilliant guy.
And how did her new husband feel when she had to get passionate on film with Damon in The Adjustment Bureau? "It comes with the job. By that time Matt and I had become friends and I had got to know his wife, Lucy. I laughed the whole time, because it's so embarrassing to kiss somebody who is your friend. And there's nothing sexy about it."
MORGAN: Who do you see of the younger crop today that have - that may have that?
HOPKINS: DiCaprio certainly and I think I'm a great fan of Matt Damon.
HOPKINS: He's a terrific actor. Terrific actor. One of my favorite films is "The Talented Mr. Ripley". Great performance. Very sinister, very scary. He's a wonderful actor.
MORGAN: Are you drawn to the darker art?
HOPKINS: No, it's not - it's not that. I think when a story is really told beautifully as was in "The Talented Mr. Ripley," I thought Matt Damon's performance was spectacular. As indeed with Jude Law. DiCaprio is a wonderful actor. A great actor.
Based on the stratospheric test scores, Miramax moved Good Will Hunting up to December 5, one week before Titanic opened. The boys went up to Weinstein’s house in Westport, Connecticut, to screen James Cameron’s movie and see what they were up against. Harvey said, “We got nothing to worry about. There’s just this one scene with the boat sinking. We’ll be fine.”
In L.A., their film premiered in Westwood, at the Bruin. “Ben’s and my names were up there, literally in lights,” Damon remembers. “We were hugging each other, really, really excited. The whole experience was overwhelming, very unhealthy. With the Miramax machine, there’s such publicity around it, it’s really hard to have a private experience in public, and the first thing that happens is that somebody puts a camera in your face and asks you how you feel, and you have the boilerplate ‘I feel great, this is crazy, what a great night.’ It’s impossible to say, ‘I’ll tell you when you get that fucking camera out of my face so I can go and sit with my family for a little while.’ I didn’t realize that it was going to be over in a flash, that no matter who you are, if you don’t have a movie in the theater that’s making money, people will just think you’re someone they went to high school with. I remember deciding that I was going to not act in movies anymore, maybe just plays, because this was not a life.”