Matthew Paige "Matt" Damon (born October 8, 1970) is an Academy Award-winning American actor, screenwriter, and philanthropist who plays the part of the Texas Ranger La Boeuf, which was portrayed by Glen Campbell in the original 1969 film.
Matthew Paige Damon, or better known to fans as Matt Damon was born in Boston Massachusetts, USA to Kent Damon, a stockbroker, Realtor and tax preparer, and Nancy Carlsson-Paige, an early childhood education professor at Lesley University. Matt has an older brother named Kyle who is now a sculptor. Unfortunately for Matt and his brother, their parents divorced in the year 1973.
The 5'10" star is of English, Finnish and Scottish ancestry. While his parents were still together, their family lived in Newton, before eventually settling for a divorce, where Damon and his brother moved with his mother to Cambridge. He grew up in a stable community back in Massachusetts. Matt also grew up near actor Ben Affleck, when he was younger.
Matt attended Cambridge Ridge and Latin School which is located in Cambridge and he performed in a number of theater productions during his time there. Later on, he was accepted into Harvard University as an English major in the fall of 1988 and was supposed to graduate with the class of 1992. While in Harvard, he kept on skipping classes to pursue acting projects, which included the TNT original film, Rising Sun (1993), and prep-school drama, School Ties (1992). It was until his film, Geronimo: An American Legend (1993), was expected to be a big success that he decided to drop out of university completely.
Arriving in Hollywood, Matt managed to get his first break with a part in the romantic comedy, Mystic Pizza (1988). However, the film did not do too well and his film career failed to take off. Not letting failure discourage him from acting, he went for another audition, and managed to get a starring role in School Ties (1992).
Up next for Matt was a role as a soldier who had problems with drug-addiction in the movie, Courage Under Fire (1996). Matt had, in fact, lost forty pounds for his role which resulted in health problems. The following year, his garnered accolades for Good Will Hunting (1997), a screenplay he had originally written for an English class at Harvard University. Good Will Hunting (1997) was nominated for 9 Academy Awards, one of which, Matt won for Best Original Screenplay along with Ben Affleck.
In the year 1998, Matt played the title role in Steven Spielberg's film, Saving Private Ryan (1998), which was one of the most acclaimed films in that year. Matt had the opportunity of working with Tom Hanks and Vin Diesel while filming that movie. That same year, he starred as an earnest law student and reformed poker player in Rounders (1998), starring opposite Edward Norton and John Malkovich.
The next year, Matt rejoined his childhood friend, Ben Affleck and fellow comedian, Chris Rock, in the comedy Dogma (1999). Towards the end of 1999, Matt played "Tom Ripley", a working-class young man who tastes the good life and will do anything to live it. Both Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow also starred in the movie. The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999) earned mixed reviews from critics, but even so, Matt earned praise for his performance.
Matt lent his voice to the animated movie, Titan A.E. (2000) in the year 2000, which also earned mixed reviews from the public. He also starred in two other movies, All the Pretty Horses (2000) and the golf comedy-drama, The Legend of Bagger Vance (2000), starring alongside Will Smith.
In the year 2003, he signed on to star in The Informant! (2009) by Steven Soderbergh and the Farrelly Brothers' Stuck on You (2003). He also starred in Gerry (2002), a film he co-wrote with his friends, Gus Van Sant and Casey Affleck.
One of Matt's most recognizable work to date is his role in the "Bourne" movie franchise. He plays an amnesiac assassin, "Jason Bourne", in The Bourne Identity (2002), The Bourne Supremacy (2004) and The Bourne Ultimatum (2007).
Another praised role is that as "Linus Caldwell" in the "Ocean's" movie franchise. He had the opportunity to star opposite George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts and Don Cheadle in Ocean's Eleven (2001). The successful crime comedy-drama eventually had two other sequels, Ocean's Twelve (2004) and Ocean's Thirteen (2007).
Among other highly acclaimed movies that Matt managed to be a part of was in Terry Gilliam's The Brothers Grimm (2005), George Clooney's Syriana (2005), Martin Scorsese's The Departed (2006) and Robert De Niro's The Good Shepherd (2006).
In his personal life, Matt is now happily married to Argentine-born Luciana Barroso, whom he met in Miami, where she was working as a bartender. They married in a private civil ceremony on December 9, 2005, at the Manhattan Marriage Bureau. The couple have four daughters Alexia, Luciana's daughter from a previous relationship, as well as Isabella, Gia and Stella.
Matt is a big fan of the Boston Red Sox and he tries to attend their games whenever possible. He has also formed great friendships with his Ocean's co-stars, George Clooney and Brad Pitt, whom he works on charity projects with. He and actor Ben Affleck, together with Ben's wife, Jennifer Garner, are also good family friends and can be often seen going out together with Matt's wife, Luciana Barroso.
Was in a relationship with Winona Ryder (December 1997-March 2000).
1998: Played in $10,000 buy-in Texas Hold 'Em tournament at the World Series of Poker (www.wsop.com) in Las Vegas. He was knocked out in the first day by poker legend Doyle Brunson. Damon had kings, Brunson aces.
Chosen as one of "the 50 Most beautiful people in the world" by People magazine (1998).
Dropped 40 pounds for his role as a Gulf War vet in Courage Under Fire (1996).
His parents divorced when he was two and he spent part of his childhood in a commune in Boston with his mother.
Dropped out of Harvard 12 credits short of graduating to pursue his acting career.
To perfect his Southern accent for his role as Rudy Baylor in The Rainmaker (1997), he tended bar in Knoxville, TN, for free. Later he hired one of the customers to serve as his dialect coach.
Auditioned for a role in To Die For (1995) which was eventually given to Joaquin Phoenix.
Audtioned for a part in Primal Fear (1996) that was eventually played by Edward Norton. He and Norton starred together two years later in Rounders (1998).
Both he and Ben Affleck worked as extras on the film Field of Dreams (1989). At one point during the shoot, Matt took some blades of grass from the field as mementos for his father.
Turned down the lead role in The Quick and the Dead (1995). Leonardo DiCaprio ended up with the role.
Turned down the lead role in The Majestic (2001).
When his baby nephew cries, he sings "Afternoon Delight" for him.
Was named as one of E!'s "25 Most Eligible Bachelors" in June, 2002.
Shaved his head for the movie The Brothers Grimm (2005) (to assist in the wearing of a wig for that role). The shaved head was shown in the movie EuroTrip (2004), which was filmed in Prague at the same time.
Started a bowling league in Berlin while making The Bourne Supremacy (2004).
Had a cameo as a waiter in the film The Sum of All Fears (2002), but it was cut from the final film.
Is the real-life best friend of Ben Affleck. Each has starred together or had cameos in each of the other's films.
Has starred in 8 movies where the title contains some part of his character's name in that movie: Good Will Hunting (1997), Saving Private Ryan (1998), The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999), Gerry (2002), Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron (2002), The Bourne Identity (2002), and The Bourne Supremacy (2004), The Brothers Grimm (2005), and The Bourne Ultimatum (2007).
While promoting The Bourne Supremacy (2004) on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" (1992), he revealed that when he was a college freshman his agent from a "ma and pa agency" inadvertently sent him and Ben Affleck to an audition for "The New Mickey Mouse Club" (1977). They were under the impression that they were going to meet the head of Touchstone Pictures.
His uncle, George Brunstad, swam the English Channel at the age of 70. He completed the 21-mile swim in 15 hours and 59 minutes, making him the new world record holder as the oldest person to complete the swim. In the process, he raised $12,000 for a Haitian children's group (29 August 2004).
Quit smoking after visiting a hypnotist in L.A.
Grew up next door to radical historian Howard Zinn. Damon references Zinn's seminal work "A People's History of the United States" as Will in Good Will Hunting (1997).
1998: Formed Pearl Street Productions with Ben Affleck and Chris Moore.
Lost 30 pounds for his role in the film The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999).
Learned to play piano for the film The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999).
Was considered for the role of Matt Murdock/Daredevil in Daredevil (2003). The role eventually went to his best friend Ben Affleck.
One of his first movie roles was a one-line part in Mystic Pizza (1988) starring Julia Roberts. Later, he starred with Roberts in Ocean's Eleven (2001).
After a notable weight gain for Stuck on You (2003), he lost 22 pounds training for The Bourne Supremacy (2004), eventually having six-pack abs.
Born on the same day as Sigourney Weaver, Kristanna Loken and Nick Cannon.
Had never made a sequel until he made Ocean's Twelve (2004) and The Bourne Supremacy (2004), both in the same year. In 2007, the third parts of those series, Ocean's Thirteen (2007) and The Bourne Ultimatum (2007), opened, making the first trilogies he's starred in.
Became stepfather to girlfriend Luciana Barroso's daughter, Alexia, when he married Luciana at City Hall in New York City (December 9, 2005).
His wife, Luciana Barroso, was born in Argentina.
Met his wife, Luciana Barroso, in Florida, while he was filming Stuck on You (2003) and she was working as a bartender.
Was once offered the chance at playing Daredevil when it was in production at Miramax in 1999. This version would have starred Damon and been written by Kevin Smith and directed by Robert Rodriguez. However, Marvel Comics wanted too large a budget for the filmmakers' tastes.
He is of Scottish, Finnish and English descent.
Turned down the part of Bobby Mercer in Four Brothers (2005), as he found the script to be "ultra-violent". The part eventually went to Mark Wahlberg.
Francis Ford Coppola cast him in The Rainmaker (1997) after seeing him in Courage Under Fire (1996).
Turned down the role of Harvey Dent in The Dark Knight (2008).
Appears in two of the six summer 2007 "threequels": Ocean's Thirteen (2007) and The Bourne Ultimatum (2007). He also appeared in the second; movies of the "Bourne" and "Ocean" franchises in the same year (2004).
Both he and best friend Ben Affleck spent Father's Day 2007 with their wives and children together on vacation in Hawaii.
Received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (26 July 2007).
Is only 11 years older than Eddie Redmayne who plays his son in The Good Shepherd (2006).
Named Hollywood's "best value" by Forbes Magazine, with his films making $29 (US) for each dollar he is paid (2007).
Named "Sexiest Man Alive" by People magazine in 2007.
He gained over 30 pounds to play Mark Whiteacre in The Informant! (2009), which he dieted off as soon as the shoot was complete.
He and Ben Affleck lived two blocks away from each other in Cambridge when they were children.
Has an older brother named Kyle, who is a sculptor.
Visited Haiti with Wyclef Jean to deliver food to hurricane victims. [September 2008]
Originally cast as Dan White in Milk (2008/I), but had to back out due to scheduling conflicts with Green Zone (2010).
Participated in the Cape Argus Cycle Tour in Cape Town, South Africa. [March 2009]
Was at some point in talks to star in a remake of Blue Thunder (1983) with John Milius directing.
Was in a relationship with Penélope Cruz (June-December 2000).
He and wife Luciana Barroso (daughter Alexia, born in 1999, from her first marriage), have three daughters together, Isabella born, June 11, 2006, Gia Zavala, born, August 20, 2008 in Miami, Florida and Stella Zavala, born October 20, 2010, in New York.
Father: Kent Damon
Mother: Nancy Carlsson-Paige
Brother: Kyle Damon
Daughters: Gia Zavala Damon (born August 20, 2008), Isabella Damon (born June 11, 2006), Stella Zavala Damon (born October 20, 2010)
Stepmother: Celeste Bradford
Stepsister: Sarah Bradford
Wife: Luciana Bozan Barroso (married December 9, 2005)
Stepdaughter: Alexia Barroso (born 1998)
Ex-significant other: Minnie Driver
Ex-significant other: Winona Ryder
|The Good Mother||Extra|
|1989||Field of Dreams||Fenway Park extra|
|1992||School Ties||Charlie Dillon|
|1993||Geronimo: An American Legend||2nd Lt. Britton Davis|
|1996||Glory Daze||Edgar Pudwhacker|
|Courage Under Fire||Specialist Ilario|
|1997||Good Will Hunting||Will Hunting|
|The Rainmaker||Rudy Baylor|
|Chasing Amy||Shawn Oran|
|Saving Private Ryan||Private James Francis Ryan|
|1999||The Talented Mr. Ripley||Tom Ripley|
|2000||Finding Forrester||Steven Sanderson|
|All the Pretty Horses||John Grady Cole|
|The Legend of Bagger Vance||Rannulph Junuh|
|Titan A.E.||Cale Tucker|
|2001||The Majestic]||Luke Trimble|
|Ocean's Eleven||Linus Caldwell|
|Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back||Himself|
|2002||Confessions of a Dangerous Mind||Matt, bachelor #2|
|The Bourne Identity||Jason Bourne|
|Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron||Spirit|
|2003||Stuck on You||Bob Tenor|
|2004||Howard Zinn: You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train||Narrator|
|Ocean's Twelve||Linus Caldwell|
|The Bourne Supremacy||Jason Bourne|
|Jersey Girl||PR Exec #2|
|The Brothers Grimm||Wilhelm Grimm|
|2006||The Good Shepherd||Edward Wilson|
|The Departed||Colin Sullivan|
|2007||Ocean's Thirteen||Linus Caldwell|
|The Bourne Ultimatum||Jason Bourne|
|Youth Without Youth||Ted Jones|
|2008||Che: Part Two||Fr. Schwarz|
|2009||Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea||Koichi|
|The Informant!||Mark Whitacre|
|2010||Green Zone||Chief Warrant Officer Roy Miller|
|True Grit (2010)||La Boeuf|
|2011||The Adjustment Bureau||David Norris|