Matt Damon ('Stuck On You')
'Sticking To The Task At Hand'
Matt Damon was born in 1970. His father, a tax preparer and mother, a college professor, are now divorced. His older brother Kyle (b. 1967), is a sculptor. Matt's first film role was a one-line part in 'Mystic Pizza' (1988), but Hollywood's powerbrokers realized his potential as a serious actor when they saw him play a Gulf War vet-turned-heroin addict in 'Courage Under Fire' (1996). One of Matt's closest childhood friends was fellow young thespian Ben Affleck who he went on to star alongside in 'Chasing Amy' (1997) before they both collaborated on the screenplay for 'Good Will Hunting' in 1997.
And while best buddy Ben Affleck has dominated tabloid headlines in recent years, Matt Damon has lived out of the limelight and got on with the day job. Starring roles in 'The Talented Mr Ripley', 'Ocean's Eleven', and 'The Bourne Identity' have put the 33-year-old in the eight figure salary bracket, a position sure to be enhanced by upcoming sequels 'Ocean's Twelve' and 'The Bourne Supremacy'. First, though, he plays Greg Kinnear's conjoined twin in 'Stuck On You'.
Did you need a lot of persuasion to do a Farrelly brothers film? "They took me out for dinner and were telling me about how they wanted to make the movie. We were right around the corner from my house in New York so I said, "Come on back to my apartment, and we'll keep talking about it." So we got back to the apartment, we're sitting around having a beer, and Pete Farrelly says to me: "Can I use your bathroom?" About two minutes later, he comes out soaking wet with a towel around his waste and shampoo in his hair. He just walks right up to me, dripping all over the living room, and he goes: "You got any conditioner?" I figured that was the "You had me at hello" moment!"
The film is about conjoined twins. Did you ever think the subject matter might be a little too controversial? "I did have one moment when I first heard about this, when I balked and wondered if it was going to cross a line into cruelty. But then, when I met and spoke with them [the Farrellys] about these characters and what they wanted to do with the movie, it was pretty clear that the spirit and tone of the movie would end up being feelgood. You know, it's really about overcoming adversity. Whatever hand you're dealt, you can overcome all kinds of obstacles and thrive."
In order to pull it off, you really were stuck to your co-star Greg Kinnear. What was that like? "That was strange! When I read it it was like: "OK, I'll be harnessed to Greg Kinnear." But the actual reality of that was pretty wild, because that obviously means trips to the bathroom, personal phone calls, and stuff like that. I said to Greg recently that I remember picking out the color of the drapes he and his wife were talking about for their house, because you couldn't help but be in the conversation. There were no secrets between us for about four months! And of course, all personal hygiene issues are absolutely a matter of common knowledge. Fortunately, Greg is basically a hypochondriac! You know those little bottles of Purel, well Greg has got those around and he's constantly re-cleaning his hands."
You also got to work with Cher! "Cher had so much class to come and do this. I mean, she really went for it and she was so willing to make fun of herself. I don't know anyone at the level she's at who would do what she does in this film with such enthusiasm. She was really cool."
Interviewed by Alana Lee
Back To Archives