Ben Affleck Was Stunned After He Was Offered $600,000 For Movie: “This Is 20 Years of My Mom’s Salary”
In a recent interview, Ben Affleck, the acclaimed actor and filmmaker, opened up about his career, personal life and his new venture with long-time friend and collaborator Matt Damon. Affleck revealed his feelings of absurdity when he was offered $600,000 for a movie, realizing that it was equivalent to his mother's 20 years' worth of salary. This realization highlighted the stark difference between the pay scales in the film industry and the real world.
Reminiscing about his earlier days in the industry, Affleck explained to The Hollywood Reporter, "My mother made, I don’t know, $30,000 a year as a public school teacher in Boston. And I remember making $600,000 for Armageddon and thinking, 'This is 20 years of my mother’s salary.'" Affleck went on to clarify that both Damon and he grew up in homes that made modest salaries and it was considered irresponsible to give up on an opportunity even if Affleck considered the project ludicrous.
Affleck and Damon have now started their own production company, Artists Equity, which focuses on profit-sharing among all members of a film crew, including directors, producers, actors and other essential personnel such as cinematographers and costume designers. The company aims to create a fair and inclusive environment in the film industry, ensuring that everyone involved in a project receives a fair share of the profits.
Their first movie under Artists Equity is titled Air and is directed by Affleck himself. The film explores the story of how Michael Jordan's family and a group of Nike executives revolutionized the business with a historic sneaker deal. The movie features an impressive cast, including Viola Davis, Damon, Chris Tucker and Jason Bateman.
In the interview, Affleck also discussed his recent battle with COVID-19 and the impact it had on his perception of the virus. He acknowledged his previous cavalier attitude towards COVID, thinking that it wouldn't affect him. However, after experiencing the illness first-hand and struggling with symptoms, Affleck realized the seriousness of the situation.
Affleck reflected on his friendship and business relationship with Damon, explaining that their trust and mutual respect have been crucial in their partnership. He admitted that they had previously fallen into the trap of believing that pursuing individual careers would be more beneficial than working together. However, their recent collaboration on The Last Duel made them realize the value of their friendship and inspired them to launch Artists Equity.
The actor-director also opened up about his experience working on superhero films, particularly his involvement in the ill-fated Justice League project. Affleck revealed that the production was plagued with issues, including bad decisions and personal tragedy, which ultimately left him with a bitter taste. He expressed his disappointment with the film and the negative impact it had on his enthusiasm for the genre.
Despite his past experiences, Affleck stated that he would not be interested in directing a film for the upcoming DC projects under James Gunn's direction. He cited a disconnect between the studios and the filmmakers, highlighting the conflicts that arise due to differing values and priorities.
Affleck also shared his views on the need for more authenticity in storytelling and the tendency of the film industry to waste a lot of resources. He emphasized that resources should be allocated to elements that truly resonate with the audience, rather than unnecessary details that do not contribute significantly to the film's impact.