Matt Damon Once Admitted to Having a ‘Problematic Temper’
Matt Damon is no stranger to making headlines. Between his public persona and private life, the Stillwater star has a lot to contend for with his more than 20 years of box office success. Even with experience in such a competitive industry, Damon admitted he still gets ruffled by a few things.
Matt Damon called his temper ‘problematic’ due to his ‘addictive’ personality
Damon has a different perspective of his youth than some. In a 2015 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the star admitted to problems with keeping his cool in certain situations.
“I had a terrible temper,” he said. “Like, a problematic temper. I still get riled up and competitive.”
The revelations, he said, became such an issue, he utilized hypnosis. The process was also an attempt to help him kick a two-pack-a-day cigarette smoking habit.
“It wasn’t nerves,” he said. “I think I’m just an addictive kind of person, and I got addicted to cigarettes. I smoked like crazy. Now it seems totally insane.”
Though it takes growth to admit something like this, it’s not the only time Damon’s “problematic temper” got him into hot water.
‘Project Greenlight’ remains a senstivie subject for Damon
The HBO reality series, Project Greenlight, gave an inside look at how movies are made. Damon and best friend Ben Affleck served as executive producers and the show ran for four seasons between 2001-2005. The biggest controversy, however, came amid remarks Damon made to contestant Effie Brown after she raised concerns.
“I just want to bring up something,” Brown said, via Washington Post. “I just want to urge people to think about whoever the director is, the way that they’re going to treat the character of Harmony. Her being a prostitute, the only black person who gets hit by her white pimp. You have this group right here, who you’re picking, and the story that you’re doing.”
After a little back and forth, Damon interrupted to do, what Twitter would call “Damonsplaining,” — a title hard to live down.
“When you’re talking about diversity, you do it in the casting of the film, not in the casting of the show,” Damon said.
“Whoo! Wow. Okay,” Brown responded, later adding, “‘I don’t care. Matt Damon or facing my mother?’ My mother won out.”
Damon insisted to THR, “there was some context taken out,” but later said after seeing the final cut he knew how it looked.
“I went, ‘Oh my God, I look like an a——.’ I thought it was a really insensitive thing to say.”
The ‘Bourne’ star issued a statement about the interaction
Damon later issued a statement about the Project Greenlight incident, but it’s not clear if he and Brown cleared the air in person.
“I believe deeply that there need to be more diverse filmmakers making movies,” he said via THR. “I love making movies. It’s what I have chosen to do with my life and I want every young person watching Project Greenlight to believe that filmmaking is a viable form of creative expression for them too.”
He added, “My comments were part of a much broader conversation about diversity in Hollywood and the fundamental nature of Project Greenlight which did not make the show. I am sorry that they offended some people, but, at the very least, I am happy that they started a conversation about diversity in Hollywood. That is an ongoing conversation that we all should be having.”
It’s not the only time Damon had strong opinions about a project
Though Damon generally avoids tabloid-making situations, he makes his opinions on projects known. Such was the case for the Bourne franchise when the star didn’t love a script for the third film, deeming it “unreadable.”
“It’s really the studio’s fault for putting themselves in that position,” he told GQ Magazine. “I don’t blame Tony for taking a boatload of money and handing in what he handed in. It’s just that it was unreadable.”
For the fourth film, the studio scrambled and created the spinoff featuring Jeremy Renner that didn’t perform well.
“I always tied myself to Paul,” Damon said. “I always said, if he came back, I would love to come back. And we would talk about it periodically. But we just didn’t have a story to tell. We just didn’t have anything. And the studio was under pressure because they have a deal with the estate: They have to make a Bourne movie or they lose the rights. I don’t know what the deal is, but I know that any time there’s a franchise that’s this successful, there’s a lot of pressure.”
Things eventually settled in what Damon called “water under the bridge.”