Matt Damon, in case you missed it above.
Matt Damon jumped on reddit this afternoon to promote his latest movie The Monuments Men, which based its current 29% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, is going to need all the help it can get. But it's usually fun whenever an A-list star takes questions from the unpredictable mob at reddit, especially one who is famous for his sense of humor and willing to trade verbal jabs with pretty much anyone.
He's also famous for being a charitable person who spends a lot of his valuable time helping others. In this case, he was promoting a charity he founded called Water.org, along with the Eastern Congo Initiative, co-founded by his pal Ben Affleck. Together they are holding a contest where the winner gets to fly out to Hollywood and hang out with them both.
It's a nice thought, but I imagine the contest winner is going to feel like a huge third wheel.
When asked how close he was to his The Talented Mr. Ripley co-star Philip Seymour Hoffman.
I mean, pretty close. We worked together a long time ago and I would see him here and there, all over the place. I’d go to his plays at the Labyrinth and I saw him just last year, we were working on Monuments Men and had dinner with him. The last time I saw him, I took my oldest daughter to The Hunger Games premiere in LA and we had a chat before the movie started. It’s just incredibly weird that he’s not around anymore.
On the chances he and the contest winner will become new best friends.
There’s a very good chance of that. I have 32 years of being Ben’s friend, I’m definitely ready for somebody new to hang out with. It’s gonna be a great time. We have a really fun night planned and we’ll probably be in some kind of competition to befriend the winner so they leave the experience saying that one of us is better than the other. I’m personally committed to making sure the winner likes me more than Ben. And if it means us starting a secret handshake or joining a bowling league, I’m in.
when asked to comment on a photo of a guy who looks ridiculously similar to him but can't grow facial hair.
Wow. He really does. Much more than me and Wahlberg. I wish I could help with the facial hair, but I've never been very good at that myself.
Who would win a fight to the death, Leonardo DiCaprio, Edward Norton and Ben Affleck.
Well, Ben is a lot bigger than those guys. He’s hopelessly uncoordinated, but he is a big dude with a huge reach advantage. Edward is smart though, so he might think of some brainiac survivor way to pit the others against each other and be the last remaining man. Leo… I’m not counting Leo out. I’m just saying I don’t know about Leo. Anyway, Wahlberg would kill all of them.
Does he ever get confused with Channing Tatum?
I don’t think I’ve ever been confused with Channing. I do get confused with Mark Wahlberg a lot, and we just have a deal that whenever we get mistaken for each other we have to be very polite. Can’t give the other a bad name.
This happened to me yesterday, I was walking down the street with my kids, and this guy screamed “MARK WAHLBERG!” I just kept walking, because I’m not Mark, and he kept screaming “MARK WAHLBERG! I SEE YOU! DON’T WALK AWAY! MARK WAHLBERG! WE KNOW IT’S YOU!” and then he runs up to me and he says, “I love your work!” And then this woman comes up, and says “I love your family, tell your brother I said Hi!” So I said “Yes, I’ll tell Donnie Wahlberg you said Hi.”
If people are insistent, theres no convincing them I’m not Mark, so I just become him and try to be nice to them. My kids were with me and there’s no easy way to explain that situation to them.
What does he think about being dragged into George Clooney's prank on Tina Fey and Amy Poehler?
I got these giant fruit baskets in the mail from Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. They had just made jokes at everyone's expense at the Golden Globes that were really funny. George made up stationary with my name on it, and sent a really wounded letter to Tina and Amy saying my feelings were really hurt, how could they do this, etc. So they sent two fruit baskets. One had a letter with an apology. Another said “If this is part of some Clooney prank, please know that we’re grown-ass comedians, and you have to do a little better to fool us.” So I photographed the letters and emailed them to George with a caption that said “Go fuck yourself.” He’s honestly a child. I can just see his shoulders shaking when he laughs alone in his house.
What he thinks about his famous NSA monologue scene in Good Will Hunting which seems more relevant than ever.
Well, the first thing to that monologue is it’s safe to say that is the hardest that Ben and I have ever laughed while writing something. We were in our old house in Hollywood, in the basement of this house writing this thing and we were literally in tears because this monologue kept building on itself. We wrote it it one night and kept performing it back and forth, and pissing ourselves laughing.
You know, I was unaware, as I think everyone was, that they had that capacity. Snowden is literally changing policy. These are conversations we have to have about our security, and civil liberties, and we have to decide what we are willing to accept, and he’s provided a huge service kickstarting that debate.
Is he worried that Jimmy Kimmel may show up and ruin his reddit AMA?
I’m actually Backstage at the Kimmel show. I’m hoping to be on tonight, I’m told I’m going to get on tonight for the first time in 10 years. Except when I tied him up and hosted the show... George Clooney made a deal to get all the Monuments Men on Kimmel, so after 10 years of waiting I’m actually going to make it on the show.
What advice he could he give to a young filmmaker?
In terms of advice - it’s tough. The business is growing more accessible because technology is more available to people than when we started you had to shoot on film and it was very hard to get a movie made, and now kids are starting to have access to cameras at a much earlier age. In terms of breaking into the business there’s no set way to do it, you have to somehow make a movie and get it out there. In Ben and my case we wrote a movie because we were struggling to get a job. We wrote jobs for ourselves. We wrote Robin William’s character, we called it the Harvey Keitel part, because with Reservoir Dogs Harvey read his part and liked it, and that how they got funding. So we knew that was that character for us. There were so were so many ways to play that character, we were casting a wide net and just hoping to we caught a big fish, and our agent Patrick, who’s still our agent, forced him to read it and he loved it. He kicked it up to the lit department, and then we had lit agents. So we got lucky, but it’s just looking for creative ways to break in. If you just sit on your hands it’s never gonna happen, its just too competitive. Jobs are available, you have to go make your own.
What did he think about the infamous portrayal of him in Team America: World Police?
I thought it was brilliant! I mean, I never understood it, and then I heard an interview with them and they said the puppet came in looking kind of mentally deficient and they didn’t have time to change it, so they just made me someone who could really only say his own name. All the comedy they’re doing is really next-level stuff. Also, I liked being included as a person who was against the Iraq war.
You can rummage through the entire exchange here.