Life and Times: Damon in Demand

In honor of Matt Damon’s new film Hereafter AND True Grit, I decided to feature him as this weeks Life and Times recipient. And he is truly an interesting one. Born on October 8th, 1970 (Happy belated 40th!) in Cambridge, MA, his life took the course of many who live there – he attended Harvard University. He dropped out to pursue his acting career, a move that while risky, clearly paid off. After a couple of less than stellar roles, he decided to make his own luck.

That's when the big breakthrough happened. He and his distant cousin Ben Affleck, maybe you've heard of him, wrote the screenplay for Good Will Hunting. After the movie became a sleeper phenomenon, Damon proved to the world that he was here to stay with a string of lucrative roles.

Since Damon’s movie star life is, well, kind of boring and his big Hollywood narrative was the plot of Good Will Hunting, I’ll just include my favorite smattering of random facts.

– He quit smoking with the help of a hypnotist.

– He founded the H2O Africa Foundation, the Not On Our Watch Campaign, and is a prominent supporter of the ONE campaign fighting AIDS in Africa.

And let’s take a look at his awards:

2 Acting Academy Award nominations

1 Writing Academy Award win

3 Emmy nominations for producing “Project Greenlight”

4 Acting Golden Globe nominations

1 Writing Golden Globe win

5 Screen Actors Guild nominations

I think we can tell that he’s very well respected and is just about due for a few big acting wins.

My least favorite thing about Damon is that in trailers, they always say starring Academy Award Winner Matt Damon, but his Oscar was for Original Screenplay… I’m not taking acting chops away from Damon, but I do see it as a bit of a lie.

But maybe the best thing about Matt Damon is that he’s not afraid to make fun of himself. I think his response to his “Jimmy Kimmel Controversy” says enough, but I’ll also include what may be the best cameo in any movie ever made. That’s right Bill Murray… better than Zombieland.

And now for the composite top 10 list of Rotten Tomatoes, IMDB, Metacritic, and Flickchart. And this one’s a doozy. We have a tie for tenth AND a tie for first place! Which is why I’ve put my first poll question up – to settle this tie.

1. Saving Private Ryan

1. The Departed

3. The Bourne Ultimatum

4. Good Will Hunting

5. The Bourne Identity

6. Ponyo

7. The Bourne Supremacy

8. Courage Under Fire

9. Chasing Amy

10. Ocean’s Eleven

10. The Talented Mr. Ripley

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