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The Matt & Ben Career-O-Meter

The divergent paths of Ben Affleck and Matt Damon

Much as we like to think of them as two halves of a hunky whole, Ben and Matt have followed divergent paths since they broke out in -- and won Oscars for -- Good Will Hunting. While Ben's usually gone the blockbuster route, Matt's stuck to more sophisticated fare. And life both at home and in the spotlight hasn't always meant happy, er, hunting.

1997

MATT: On top with Good Will Hunting; dating & dumps Minnie Driver BEN: On top with Good Will Hunting; dating Gwyneth Paltrow

1998

M: Hi, Winona Ryder; Saving Private Ryan will lose Best Picture B: Armageddon's a hit; Shakespeare in Love will win Best Pic

1999

M: All skinny and pale in the highbrow Talented Mr. Ripley B: All goofy in lowbrow Forces of Nature; breaks with Gwynnie

2000

M: Big bombs include All the Pretty Horses; bye-bye, Winona B: Reindeer Games and Bounce are high-profile letdowns

2001

M: A supporting turn in hit Ocean's Eleven restores cred B: Project Greenlight buoys both; Pearl Harbor does okay

2002

M: Smart Bourne Identity scores; guests on Will & Grace B: Silly Sum of All Fears scores; starts going out with J. Lo

2003

M: Stuck on You flops; Bourne Supremacy in production B: Gigli becomes an instant punchline; Bennifer hits skids

This Judd's for them! Opening night at a once Saddam-owned Iraq

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This Judd's for them! Opening night at a once Saddam-owned Iraq movie theater for the troops to feature Ashley Judd

Originally posted Mar 26, 2004 Published in issue #757 Mar 26, 2004 Order article reprints