Speaking with Bill Simmons’ on his new show Any Given Wednesday this week, Affleck opened up about that particular low point. “If you went by what people said … I wasn’t cool and I wasn’t talented, and I was, like, the lowest rung of cool and talented that you could possibly be in the public consciousness at that time. I had broken up with Jennifer Lopez [in 2004] and I had, like, three or four movies in a row that had bombed.”
Affleck recalled the last straw, though, when he was once the punch line in a United Airlines clip that comedian Robert Wuhl recorded.
Affleck laughed, “So that guy had to look around and go, ‘Who’s below me that I can s–t on?’ And he picked me. He did a whole bit about me that I saw on United Airlines and I [thought], This is it, it really doesn’t get much worse than this. That was where I found myself when I thought, Hey, I want to take up directing, which is for people that are taken seriously. That became my mantra — ‘I’m just going to work harder than everybody else.'”
Affleck does give estranged wife Jennifer Garner credit for helping him get back on track. “My wife was really instrumental and helpful in me doing a lot of that work because I was just so focused [on it] and it was harder to balance family and all that.” Even though the two have since separated, they are now focused on raising their three children together.
Of course, what most people are talking about in this Affleck Any Given Wednesday interview is Ben’s curse-filled rant about Deflategate and how the New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was poorly treated… take a look!
Affleck is currently directing and starring in Live by Night, a look at the Prohibition Era. Check out the gallery!