Smoking a cigarette in 2016. Photo: AKIF/BACKGRID This article was featured in One Great Story , New York 's reading recommendation newsletter. Sign up here to get it nightly. For years after Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck broke up, it was treated as common knowledge that the relationship had almost ruined the actor's career. "If I have a regret, it was doing the music video," said Affleck in 2008, after he made his directorial debut with Gone Baby Gone. He was referring to his appearance in 2002's "Jenny From the Block," which featured Affleck and Lopez being surveilled by paparazzi while trying to live their fabulous lives, something they were also doing for real. This brand of fame — gossip fame, inland fame — is not one to which serious actors expose themselves. Matt Damon, who has largely managed to avoid that kind of spotlight, returned to the narrative about his old friend in a recent New York Times Magazine profile: By Damon's account, during and after Bennifer 1.0, Affleck felt he could "sell magazines but not movie tickets." When the Times Magazine writer gave Affleck the chance to respond, the actor gently chided him for implying he had invited… Read full this story
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