Ben Affleck spoke in a recent interview about how he’s email-friends-when-it-suits-him with ex-fiancee Jennifer Lopez. That he regrets filming the Jenny From the Block video although it’s worth it because he got to see her naked. And now in an interview with GQ, Affleck explains the backlash he got from the relationship with Lopez that makes it sound like he’s got PTSD 10 years later.
- On the media’s reaction to him dating Jennifer Lopez: ‘At the time, I knew on some level, ‘This is insane.’ What was that guy’s name who killed his wife and dumped her off the side of a boat? [Scott] Peterson. I remember thinking he actually gets slightly better treatment than I do in the press. At least they had to say ‘alleged killer.’ Unfortunately, there’s an aspect of that that’s like one of those fights you see on YouTube where one of them falls down and then a bunch of people who were standing around come over and kick the person. They don’t know them, they have no involvement in the fight, but they recognize a moment that they can get a free shot in, and for some people it’s just too much to resist. And that was definitely me at that point. I was the guy. I was the designated person to loathe.’
- On why he got that negative treatment in the press: ‘The amount of venom… I must have touched some specific little place in the consciousness. I don’t believe I didn’t deserve any negative judgment for anything, but it was just way out of whack. People decided that I was the frat guy, even though I’ve never been inside a fraternity, or the guy who beat them up at school, even though that wasn’t me at all.’
- On how people perceived him at the time: ‘The most pernicious illusion, myth, was that ‘This [attention] is something that this guy wants… he’s wanting this much coverage.’ That’s the most unappealing thing that you can say about somebody. And I knew how disastrous it was. It was the last thing I wanted, and I could tell it was damaging me, and I tried to get away from it, but there was still this idea: This is what this guy wants, he’s a shallow guy, a camera whore or whatever. And there was no convincing people that that wasn’t the case.’
- On the role he played in the hysteria: ‘There were ways I did contribute to it, still kind of naively. Like these car dealerships would often say, ‘Hey, do you want to drive around a car? Go take it as long as you like. You can drive this Rolls-Royce for nothing, for free.’ The Boston kid in me thought, ‘This is great! What a deal! I can just drive this car around. Let my friends drive it.’ But then this image of a young guy in a Rolls-Royce was very off-putting to people. Probably be off-putting to me now if I saw it. And I didn’t quite have the wherewithal to be smart about that at the time. I think I just ran away. You can only handle so much. I moved for a while to this place in Georgia that I have, was able to get away, by and large, from stuff. Come up with a plan for how to do something with my life that doesn’t put me in the crosshairs of this sort of thing.’