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Faux Pair

''Matt'' and ''Ben'' star in a new surreality show. Two women portray a pre-Bennifer Damon and Affleck in a hit Off Broadway spoof

Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, ... | NOTHIN' LIKE A DAMON? Actresses Kaling and Withers have the title roles in ''Matt & Ben,'' a satire of the stars' pre-''Good Will'' hunt for…
Image credit: Ben and Matt: George DeSota/Getty Images; Matt and Ben the play: Will Beckton
NOTHIN' LIKE A DAMON? Actresses Kaling and Withers have the title roles in ''Matt & Ben,'' a satire of the stars' pre-''Good Will'' hunt for their muse

Back in 1995, Ben Affleck was just another ambitious unknown with big dreams tucked under his backward baseball cap. One day, as he and buddy Matt Damon struggled to finish their adaptation of ''The Catcher in the Rye,'' a script titled ''Good Will Hunting'' literally fell from the sky, altering their lives forever.

At least that's the story according to ''Matt & Ben,'' an Off Broadway play that spoofs one of Hollywood's greatest success stories, made even more clever by the fact that it stars two women: Mindy Kaling (Ben) and Brenda Withers (Matt), who cowrote the hour-long play two years ago.

The play's initial sold-out run has been extended indefinitely, and there are talks of an L.A. production. Damon and Affleck haven't seen the show, but director David Warren isn't worried about offending the two stars. ''I think they're the kind of guys who'd get the joke.''

Originally posted Oct 03, 2003 Published in issue #731 Oct 03, 2003 Order article reprints