Friday, February 17, 2012

Ben Affleck

Benjamin Géza Affleck-Boldt (born August 15, 1972), better known as Ben Affleck, is an American actor, film director, writer, and producer. He became known with his performances in Kevin Smith's films such as Mallrats (1995) and Chasing Amy (1997). Affleck won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award for the screenplay for Good Will Hunting (1997), which he co-wrote with Matt Damon, and has appeared in lead roles in such popular hits as Armageddon (1998), Pearl Harbor (2001), Changing Lanes (2002), The Sum of All Fears (2002), Daredevil (2003), Hollywoodland (2007) and State of Play (2009).

Affleck is a critically acclaimed filmmaker. He directed Gone Baby Gone (2007) and The Town (2010), playing the lead in the latter. He has worked with his younger brother, actor Casey Affleck, on several projects, including Good Will Hunting and Gone Baby Gone.

Affleck has been married to Jennifer Garner since June 2005. They have two daughters, Violet Anne, born December 2005, and Seraphina Rose Elizabeth, born January 2009, and are currently expecting their third child. He dated the actress Gwyneth Paltrow in 1998. His relationship with actress/singer Jennifer Lopez attracted worldwide media attention, in which Affleck and Lopez were dubbed "Bennifer". The two broke up in 2004.

Affleck has been actively involved in politics and charitable causes. He and Matt Damon also founded the production company LivePlanet.

Early Life
Affleck was born in Berkeley, California. His mother, Christine Anne "Chris" (née Boldt), is a school district employee and teacher, and his father, Timothy Byers Affleck, has been, at various times, a drug counselor, social worker, janitor, auto mechanic, bartender, writer, director, and actor with the Theater Company of Boston. Affleck's mother graduated from Harvard University and was a freedom rider in the 1960s; she teaches in Cambridge Public Schools. His younger brother is actor Casey Affleck. Affleck has Irish, Scottish, English, and German ancestry (the surname "Affleck" is Scottish). He was raised in a mostly Episcopal family. His family moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts, when he was very young and his parents divorced in 1984. At age eight, Affleck met 10-year-old Matt Damon, who lived two blocks away (Damon is Affleck's tenth cousin, once removed, through a common New England ancestor). The two later attended Cambridge Rindge and Latin School together, although they were in different grades. Affleck attended Occidental College in Los Angeles, as well as the University of Vermont, and majored in Middle Eastern affairs.

Family and Relationship
Affleck had a high-profile romance with actress Gwyneth Paltrow in 1998, following her breakup with actor Brad Pitt. In 2002, he began dating actress/singer Jennifer Lopez, whom he had met prior to filming Gigli. The same year, his engagement to Lopez was announced, and the relationship between the two received much attention from the entertainment media, who dubbed the couple "Bennifer". Despite a wedding planned for September 14, the couple broke up in 2004, both blaming the media attention - including an alleged incident in which Affleck partied with Christian Slater and some lap dancers in Vancouver. The negative publicity and media attention carried over to the 2003 film Gigli, which also was a box office failure.

He subsequently began seeing his Daredevil co-star, actress Jennifer Garner, and the two were engaged after nine months of dating. Affleck and Garner were married on June 29, 2005 in Turks and Caicos, located in the Atlantic Ocean north of Haiti and the Dominican Republic. They have two daughters, Violet Anne, born in December 2005 and Seraphina Rose Elizabeth, born in January 2009. It was announced on August 22, 2011 that the couple is expecting their third child, due in early 2012. They have year round homes in Los Angeles and Massachusetts, and a vacation home in Savannah, Georgia.

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