Entertainment

‘That’s not true:’ Ben Affleck clarifies his comments about Jennifer Garner and their kids

"Let me be clear: That's not true. I don't believe that."

Ben Affleck Howard Stern
Ben Affleck attended the Los Angeles premiere of Amazon Studio's "The Tender Bar" at TCL Chinese Theatre on Dec. 12, 2021 in Hollywood, Calif. Amy Sussman

After facing vitriol on Twitter for comments he made about his kids and ex-wife, Jennifer Garner, during an interview with Howard Stern, actor Ben Affleck visited his pal Jimmy Kimmel’s late-night show in an attempt to set the record straight.

Affleck, whose new film “The Tender Bar” opens nationwide on Dec. 22 before arriving on Amazon Prime Video on Jan. 7, blamed “clickbait” journalists who highlighted a single comment from the two-hour interview.

In the interview with Stern earlier this week, Affleck was frank about his marriage trouble with Garner, which culminated in divorce in 2018.

“I’d probably still be drinking,” Affleck told Stern. “Part of why I started drinking alcohol was because I was trapped. I was like, ‘I can’t leave because of my kids, but I’m not happy. What do I do?’”

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Social media reaction to Affleck’s comments was swift, with the online masses calling out Affleck for shifting blame for his alcoholism to his ex-wife and kids.

During his appearance on Kimmel’s show Wednesday night, Affleck tried to correct the narrative, saying that a “clickbait” website had “literally taken the conversation that I had had for two hours and made it seem as if I was saying the exact opposite of what I said.”

“It was a really cool, longform, in-depth, two-hour interview,” Affleck told Kimmel. “And because the movie is about family and all this stuff that’s meaningful to me, we talked a lot about my family, divorce, alcoholism, and struggling with real things, and how you have to be accountable and loving, and how I work with my ex-wife, and how I’m so proud of how we work together for our kids the best way we can for them.”

Affleck said that ironically, he was initially pleased with how the Stern interview had gone.

“The whole time, I thought, ‘Wow, I should do more honest, exploratory, self-evaluating things.,'” Affleck said. “And then I starting seeing all this stuff coming up on Twitter.”

Affleck acknowledged that being the subject of online discourse is an inevitable part of the celebrity experience.

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“I’m happy to be Sad Batman and Dunkin’ Donuts and the meme,” Affleck said. But the actor said he had to “draw the line” when it’s “about my kids.”

“Let me be clear: That’s not true. I don’t believe that,” Affleck said. “It’s the exact opposite of who I am, what I believe, and I would never want my kids to think I would ever say a bad word about their mom.”

Watch the full interview below.

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