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Matt Damon News Column
Leno, GWH 15 years later
  • A summary of Matt's appearance on Leno is available at the Examiner.

    Matt Damon currently lives with his wife Luciana and four daughters in New York, but is planning a move to LA at the end of the school year. Leno asked him why he was making the move and Damon credited it to his long-time friendship with Ben Affleck who is married to Jennifer Garner and has three children of his own.

    He said, “We just decided to come back. I’m gonna be right down the street from Ben and we can keep the kids all together.”

    Damon and Affleck have been friends for over 32 years, having met when Matt was 10 and Ben was 8.

  • Matt and Gus reflected on the making of Good Will Hunting at a reception for Promised Land on Monday - from Vulture (apologies - source of original tumblr pic unknown):

    When did Damon become aware that his little movie had become a monster hit? "I know I realized it when Harvey Weinstein called me and told me that we could get it to $150 million, but Robin had a deal — God, I love Robin — against 20 percent of the gross," said Damon. "He was one of the biggest movie stars at the time, but he drastically reduced his fee and basically bet on the movie by saying, 'After it reaches $60 million, I get an increasing percentage of the gross.' And when they drew up the contract, Miramax was like, '$60 million? If we can get to $60 million, that'd be amazing.' And it made more than twice that!"

    "They hit a point where, just mathematically, it cost more for Harvey to keep the ads in the papers and keep the movie in theaters than to just pull it and get more money on DVD and video. So Harvey called me and said, 'We can keep it in [theaters], and we can definitely get the movie to $150 million, but I need you to call Robin and ask his permission to renegotiate the deal from this point on.' And I was like, 'Harvey, are you asking me to call the guy who not only got our movie made, but believed in it so much that he structured his entire deal around its success? There's no way I'm making that phone call.' And I didn't, and Good Will Hunting made $138 million." Damon laughed uproariously.

    Thanks to Van Sant's naturalistic approach, the movie still holds up today, fifteen years later. Well, all right ... there is one thing that feels dated about it: Damon's yellow-blond nineties haircut.

    "You know, and I fought for that hair," Damon admitted, groaning. "That is so my fault. For whatever weird reason at that age, I loved that haircut. Gus was like, 'Really?' Ben was like, 'Really?' If you look at Ben's hair in that movie, it's totally acceptable by today's standards, but no, I wanted the frosted fuckin' hair. I don't know what my problem was. I looked like I should be singing backup for Color Me Badd."

  • Press notes for Promised Land are available at the official site.

    For nine months, work on screenplay drafts continued. Moore marvels, “Matt and John have a very strong work ethic; they would make time to get together and refine the script, whether it was in Mexico City, Vancouver, or New York City. These two guys are very secure in being able to tell each other when an idea is bad – which I think is the most important thing in a partnership – and are truly supportive when an idea is good.”

    Closest to home on the West Coast, the writing partners convened “every weekend while Matt was shooting We Bought a Zoo,” recalls Krasinski. “We’d write all day Saturday and all day Sunday with his kids and our wives all around. It could get chaotic.”

    Damon says, “During the week, John and I would go back to our jobs and pore over what we’d written during our downtimes, scribbling notes and ideas before reconvening on the weekend to revise and revise and revise.

    “My wife said to me, ‘You had such a great time that even if it never gets made, it was worth it because you remembered how much you love writing and you had this incredible creative experience with John.’”

  • An interview with Gus is at After Elton.

    AE: What do Damon and Krasinki bring out of each other as writers?

    Gus Van Sant: I heard [Damon] say just yesterday that he wouldn't necessarily write much unless he had a writing partner. Or he wouldn't write at all. It's not like he's turned out a bunch of screenplays in his spare time. I think he's used to writing from the perspective of a performer. Because they're both performers, they can act out ideas or do scenes together as they're writing. The writing comes from those scenes, that imagining. They're making each other laugh by imagining a scene in a given part of the story, and they get into it. I've seen them do it. Even if it was a wrong turn. "What if you two guys were playing pool together?" And they'd visit it, and start doing it. They'd make stuff up. If they liked the dialogue that came out, then they might take out the pool table [in the scene]. They're actually writing, but they're writing out loud. They both need someone to ping-pong off of. In John's case, he can go faster than Matt and be as quick-witted or quicker -- probably quicker. And probably because Matt feels John is quicker than he is, there's some competitiveness there.

  • Excerpts from a Variety Q&A with Matt, John and Gus is at YouTube.
  • 34 comments or Leave a comment
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    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2012 02:32 pm (UTC) (Link)

    7 clips from Promised Land


    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2012 02:55 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Fan photo


    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2012 03:53 pm (UTC) (Link)


    NBC.com has the full episode of jay Leno up. When jay asks matt why he's coming back to la he started saying well it was a lot and he cut himself off and gave the answer you posted above. He said that they do love New York. Makes me wonder if they'll eventually move back to New York.
    I think ben & family should just move to New York. 😊
    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2012 04:49 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Leno

    Ben cant do pre production and post production for movies that he directs anywhere besides LA, especially since their company is set up at Warner Bros. Matt also wants to start producing more and start directing so he has to be in LA for all the meetings and casting etc. However, in Ben's recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter (Oct 2012) he said that he expects to move to suburban NY or Georgia when his kids are teenagers, so maybe Matt agreed to move now knowing they will be back in a couple of years supposedly.
    Re: Leno - (Anonymous) - Expand
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    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2012 07:21 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Tavis smiley

    Part 1 of Matt's interview is up here:

    Part 2 continues tonight so that should be up tomorrow. Nothing new with this interview.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2012 09:24 pm (UTC) (Link)


    I think i know why that Matt and his family are moving to L.A. because, he wants to live near Ben and his family, both Matt's and Ben's families can blend together and both fellas got a production company together called Pearl Street!
    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 13th, 2012 12:37 am (UTC) (Link)


    There was a tweet today stating that Matt did a live chat with Gold Derby but so far I haven't been able to find it.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: December 13th, 2012 01:13 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: interview?

    Some questions were posted on the site by readers but I haven't seen a transcript:


    It might go up here: http://www.goldderby.com/news/

    There are picture of Matt going to a gym on X17.
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    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: December 13th, 2012 10:01 am (UTC) (Link)

    Photos, Kimmel story, Water.org

    Photos of Matt going to a gym in LA: http://www.x17online.com/gallery/view_gallery.php?gallery=damon121212_X17

    John tells a story on Kimmel that Matt told (on Letterman?) years ago:

    It's interesting this year that Matt hasn't brought up (or been told to talk about) water.org in any interview apart from Tavis Smiley. Maybe it was decided to separate charity/movie work, and the round of interviews solely focused on water.org six or so weeks ago represented a different strategy.

    Edited at 2012-12-13 10:30 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 13th, 2012 02:45 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Photos, Kimmel story, Water.org

    The story that John tells is the same one matt told on Leno last year. I laughed when matt told it but johns version was funnier.

    Wonder if matt is on his way back to New York?
    From: (Anonymous) Date: December 13th, 2012 07:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

    New playboy interview


    Matt has done a very good playboy interview. It's the same reporter who interviewed him back in 2004.
    4mattdamon From: 4mattdamon Date: December 13th, 2012 07:46 pm (UTC) (Link)

    LA Times Q&A

    I attended the excellent LA Times screening last night. The movie itself is Great!! I'm glad to say there is a level of comedy to the movie too, banter with Rosemarie Dewitt and some funny Matt reactions/lines! I sat directly in front of Matt (10feet away from him). He's adorable. He seems a little shy too. He looked great! You'll all see the q&a once it gets posted on LA Times' website! No pics were allowed during the q&a :( much to my disappointment. Too bad cause the lighting was great. Matt didn't look tired he seemed relaxed and comfortable. He sported a little scruff. Focus Features is completely behind these q&a's that have been going on every night.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: December 13th, 2012 11:02 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: LA Times Q&A

    Thanks very much - wonder if the Q&As have now come to an end.

    No Golden Globe nominations for Matt or the film.

    People photo:

    Water.org to be part of a CNN Christmas special:
    4mattdamon From: 4mattdamon Date: December 13th, 2012 08:27 pm (UTC) (Link)

    LA Times

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