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Matt Damon News Column
  • Minnie Driver discusses the filming of Good Will Hunting at the Telegraph Magazine, but isn't entirely honest. Picture is from an unknown source via tumblr (if anyone knows the source please let me know):

    We were taking a break from filming a really pivotal scene in Good Will Hunting, and Matt Damon and Gus Van Sant, the director, were having an intense chat about the script – they changed a lot of it as we went along and they often broke off to have serious discussions. I think I'm laughing at Ben Affleck, who was just out of frame – he is a very funny guy. This scene was important; it is the moment where Skylar, my character, keeps asking Will Hunting, Matt's character, how he can do her organic chemistry paper in five seconds flat, when it takes her four weeks to figure it out.

    Matt had been at Harvard, and the idea for Good Will Hunting came out of a writing assignment – Will Hunting is a genius who is forced to see a therapist, played by Robin Williams, and study advanced mathematics with a renowned professor, played by Stellan Skarsgård, in order to avoid going to jail. He and Ben developed the script purely so they could have a shot at being actors. At this point they were completely unknown, but I had left drama school at 21 and made Circle of Friends (1995), Big Night and Sleepers (both 1996) and Grosse Pointe Blank (1997), which was just out and quite a big hit, so I was on a bit of a roll.

    I was 26 when I auditioned for the part of Skylar. Matt and Ben were about an hour and a half late for the audition and I was just sitting, waiting with Gus, who is so awkward when he doesn't know you. When they finally rocked up I was so nervous and hyped up that I hit them with everything I had. Afterwards they said, 'Wow, we want you.' Harvey Weinstein, who was one of the producers, did not want me at all: I wasn't sexy enough, I wasn't cute enough and I wasn't Gwyneth Paltrow enough; but luckily he backed down. Skylar wasn't a huge jump for me – she was British, upper middle class, funny, nice, and in love with Will. In real life, by the time we filmed this scene, I was completely in love with Matt. I was blown away by his commitment to me as an actor, he was cute and intelligent and altogether a really charming package. I was young and I fell for him – it's an occupational hazard.

    When the film came out in January 1998, it was a huge success; it earned more than $10 million on the opening weekend and we were nominated for nine Oscars, winning two, for Best Supporting Actor for Robin Williams and Best Original Screenplay for Ben and Matt. Suddenly the interest in Matt and me as a couple went bonkers. But then we split up very publicly that April, which was grim, and it turned from this beautiful thing into something so dark. I'm always really sad that we didn't stay friends because it was absolutely incandescent making that film. It was a beautiful experience and I'm so proud of that time.

  • From an interview with Lisa Snowdon:

    Matt Damon flew to London just to come to my birthday party. It was my fortieth and I had made big plans and Matt came all this way for it. The press made a big deal about the fact that he arrived without a present but that was only because he’d just stepped off a plane. I’ve known Matt since my time with George Clooney.

  • Details of the We Bought A Zoo extra features are at The Uncool. An old interview with Matt is at the Daily Mail. An interview with Matt and Cameron Crowe about their Oscar experiences is at Sky Movies.
  • 13 comments or Leave a comment
    From: (Anonymous) Date: February 26th, 2012 03:37 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Good Will Hunting

    I thought they split up in early January (before Oprah). It was very public and awkward for both of them, I guess. And, it's obvious that they didn't stay friends.

    I always had the impression that Minnie has something unresolved with the way that relationship ended. I don't know.. maybe is the way she talks about it. I think in some point, you have to move on.

    Lovely pictures! They were so young... :)

    PS:In which part of the interview, you say she is not entirely honest?

    From: (Anonymous) Date: February 26th, 2012 05:16 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Good Will Hunting

    If I recall correctly for some event where they were going to appear together minnie's people had told matt's people that she didnt want him speaking to her. Also I wanna say a couple of years later she was on a talk show they started talking about Matt. She said that he broke with her because he wanted to sleep with Winona and she was more attractive. And I don't know if this is true but I remember reading the reason Matt left her is because she would call paps to let them know where they were at. Not to mention she lied about him breaking up with her on oprah. And they did break up long before the oscars and before oprah. I think the mistake he made was announcing it on oprah and that's what pissed her off.

    Yeah I wonder why they didn't stay friends. (sarcastic tone). But I do think she's a good actress. I liked her in her roles.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: February 27th, 2012 01:18 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Good Will Hunting

    Matt didn't meet Winona until New Year's Eve, and he had broken up with Minnie weeks beforehand. I think the Oprah show was in December and they were already broken up. So the April date is clearly wrong.

    I hadn't heard the talk show story above (about Winona), but I don't think that is correct for the timing issues noted above.

    The report that claimed Matt was asked not to speak to Minnie because it would be difficult for her was in relation to the Oscars.

    And clearly the reason they aren't friends is because she lied about how they broke up.

    The main posting was clearly all about British wannabes. The Lisa Snowdon comment on Matt not bringing a present was pretty shameless - she monitored all coverage about her birthday and that's the main thing she wanted to reference?

    Edited at 2012-02-27 01:20 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: February 27th, 2012 04:06 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Good Will Hunting

    I tried to do a quick search of the talk show thing but to no avail. I was a little surprise when I found the recap of it. And if I remember correctly it wasn't a talk show in the states. I wanna say it was Graham norton but again I can't remember. But I don't believe it anyway because as you say the timing.

    Also my sarcastic tone was meant for the friends comment. Just wanted to be clear. It's obvious why they're not.

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: February 27th, 2012 07:55 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Good Will Hunting

    I know.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: February 27th, 2012 09:35 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Good Will Hunting

    I remember the comment too, it was either Graham Norton or Jonathan Ross when he was at the BBC. They are very strict about taking down content on Youtube so I don't think it would be easy to find. Marcia
    From: (Anonymous) Date: February 26th, 2012 06:50 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Minnie Driver Interview

    Not sure what to make of the interview. She was on the Graham Norton Show on Friday night with Mark Wahlberg. She said that she loved Entourage and complained that she was never offered a cameo. Mark said that he'd asked her several times and she always declined. Now I'm no fan of Mark but I could tell he was telling the truth, so I think she has lied in this interview too.

    Maybe she's trying to put things right. But Matt was right not to want to have anything to do with her after they split. Didn't he say in the GQ Q & A that his favourite quality is loyalty? Whatever the right or wrongs of their split, she humiliated him in public, I would find that hard to forgive.

    Good Will Hunting is still her best role, she did a TV series for the BBC recently, it and she were dreadful, gave up after 2 episodes. Marcia
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: February 27th, 2012 01:26 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Minnie Driver Interview

    Matt did say that in the Vanity fair interview.

    Funny that even Mark Wahlberg can be believed over Minnie.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: February 27th, 2012 07:03 am (UTC) (Link)

    Kimmel skit

    Matt made an appearance in a post-Oscars clip on Jimmy Kimmel:


    In partial gif format, via tumblr:


    Edited at 2012-02-27 07:55 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: February 27th, 2012 03:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Kimmel skit

    This must have been why he was in la. I couldn't help but laugh at Matt in a grape suit but overall this was dumb in my opinion.
    loganx2 From: loganx2 Date: February 27th, 2012 04:13 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Kimmel skit

    Matt's part was shot in nyc. you could tell when he was walking out it was new york.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: February 28th, 2012 03:58 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Kimmel skit

    Oops. Didn't pay attention to his surroundings. The la trip came to mind and since kimmel is in la I jumped to that conclusion.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: February 28th, 2012 04:36 am (UTC) (Link)

    Promised Land

    Earlier Twitter rumor confirmed - Promised Land may film in Pittsburgh.

    13 comments or Leave a comment