Ben Affleck “freaked out” by high level attention
Ben Affleck, as usual, doth protest too much.
Days after an Affleck source told Page Six the actor was “freaked out” by the “Princess Diana-level” attention he got in Paris — excuse me, Ben, but you’ll have to vie with one Meghan Markle for that mantle — he and Jennifer Lopez threw a three-days-long wedding extravaganza with Vogue magazine and a retinue of paparazzi on hand.
Sure, Affleck wants privacy for this most sacred of occasions: her fourth marriage, his second, and the one meant to make up for the wedding Affleck called off to Lopez in 2004 — their love, he’s often said, unable to withstand the excessive media attention. One wonders whether the real reason was, naturally, the rumor of Affleck’s alleged indiscretion with a stripper (which he strongly denied). But I digress.
J.Lo and Affleck, don’t you know, are all about subtlety, taste and tact. Hence the location, Affleck’s lavish Georgia plantation — despite the connotations with slavery, despite reminding us all that Affleck once pressured Henry Louis Gates Jr. to scrub a slave-owning ancestor from his episode of “Finding Your Roots.”
This is the same guy who repeatedly called the paps during lockdown, slow-walking through the suburban streets of LA with then-girlfriend Ana de Armas. The same guy who never learns, even after his literal butt-kissing appearance in Lopez’s video “Jenny from the Block” made him a laughingstock. Who recently told Howard Stern that he’d “probably still be drinking” had he stayed married to Jennifer Garner, mother of his three children, because he felt so “trapped” in their marriage. Who made sure the paps got a shot of someone dumping a life-size cutout of Armas in his trash after they broke up last year.
Sure: Dignity and privacy, thy name is Ben Affleck.
Let’s revisit that honeymoon in Paris, shall we?
Lopez and Affleck left their street-facing windows at the Hôtel de Crillon unobscured so the paps could shoot them in their bridal suite, Affleck smoking out the window, J.Lo looking like Evita Perón.
Then there was that totally impromptu, not-at-all-stiff make-out session near the Élysée Palace, their heads perfectly angled for photogs. And the showboating at the Louvre, with Lopez in a $2,500 Dior sweater during Europe’s brutal heatwave.
Affleck passed out, head back and mouth open, on deck during a daylight cruise down the Seine. Just two honeymooners trying to keep a low profile at the City of Love’s biggest tourist traps.
As for this weekend’s second wedding ceremony, there were plenty of tents, yet somehow — I can’t quite figure out how, or who made this egregious mistake, but somehow drones and aerial photographers got plenty of photographs of the bride and groom walking down the aisle, kissing and posing for wedding pictures.
Maybe because Lopez’s poofy train was so long it could be seen from outer space. And of course, what’s a private, intimate ceremony without Vogue covering the whole thing?
It’s enough to make one wonder: Has Ben Affleck even met Jennifer Lopez?
To paraphrase Warren Beatty vis-à-vis Madonna: J.Lo doesn’t want to live off-camera, much less speak off-camera. Why do something if it’s off-camera?
To wit: Read all about their “secret” Vegas wedding, replete with pics, on Lopez’s branded newsletter On the JLo (I kid you not).
The most recent nuptials for these two wallflowers include great tabloid tidbits: inside shots of the venue, tackily outfitted with red velvet tablecloths (what better choice for summertime in the south), thick black plastic ashtrays, Edison bulbs (what is this, early-2000s Williamsburg?) and rustic fences with curlicue word art reading, in part, “Baby I love u, heart & soul, marry me.”
Romantic expression by way of HomeGoods. We should all aspire to such rarefied sophistication. There was also the groom’s only sibling, caught by paparazzi in LA the day of the wedding, bed-headed and mumbling that he had “other things to do”; Affleck’s mom needing a last-minute trip to the ER; leaks that Jennifer Garner, Affleck’s long-suffering first wife, had been invited; and now, reports that we may be in for a third wedding ceremony, this one for all the A-listers back in LA who, for very good reasons I’m sure, couldn’t make it to this one.
Not that Affleck is looking for attention. After all, it was a very subdued, exhausted, surely clean-living Affleck who tried to sneak out of Georgia after the wedding, flying private with someone who really knows how to keep a low profile — his true life partner, Matt Damon.