Matt and Ben at it again! Matt Damon and Ben Affleck reunite onscreen in the forthcoming biographical movie Air.
The film — which Affleck directed — focuses on Nike’s pivotal partnership with Michael Jordan and the ensuing launch of the Air Jordan sneaker. The Good Will Hunting actors portray Nike cofounder Phil Knight (Damon) and Nike executive Sonny Vaccaro (Affleck).
“There’s nothing cool about Nike,” Marlon Wayans, playing basketball coach George Raveling, laments in the trailer.
“1984 has been a tough year. Our sales are down. Our growth is down,” Jason Bateman’s Rob Strasser adds. When tasked with reinvigorating the company’s image, Knight pitches the idea of building a new shoe line around then-rookie Jordan.
Affleck stated in a January 2023 statement that he and Damon are “very excited for audiences to see Air.”
The Argo star continued: “The movie was an extraordinary experience where we had the honor of working with some of the best cast and crew in the business, all of whom brought passion, persistence and creativity to a collective effort at recreating a remarkable and aspirational story.”
The upcoming release marks the longtime friends’ first collaboration since 2021’s The Last Duel, which they starred in and cowrote along with Nicole Holofcener. Air is also Affleck’s return to directing following the 2016 crime drama Live By Night. The pair became household names after cowriting and starring in the 1997 film Good Will Hunting, which earned them an Oscar for Best Screenplay — Written Directly for the Screen.
The filmmakers are childhood friends who met in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in the early 1980s.
“I grew up with this guy, I’ve known him forever,” Affleck told E! News of the Saving Private Ryan star at the October 2021 New York City premiere of The Last Duel. “We’re from the same world and place and stayed close and I often think about people who come into this business and there’s some challenges that get thrown at you.”
The Town actor continued: “And having somebody to go through it with me and bounce stuff off of has been really helpful. You’re lucky if you get to do the job you love and luckier if it’s with people that you love.”
Affleck has also said that achieving success alongside Damon helped keep him grounded.
“I can’t speak for Matt, but my own kind of sanity and mental health really benefited from having someone who I grew up with and knew as a child who was also going through something similar—this 20-year-plus journey of being in the public eye—who I could reflect on it with honestly, talk things over with, be myself with, who I knew why we were friends, why he was interested and loved me, why I loved him,” he told GQ in September 2021.
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