Good Will Hunting and Dogma costars (and longtime friends) Matt Damon and Ben Affleck were all smiles as they reunited onstage at Sunday's Oscars

By Jen Juneau
February 26, 2017 11:30 PM
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Kevin Winter/Getty
Credit: Kevin Winter/Getty

You can take the boys out of Boston, but they always find their way back to each other.

Longtime friends Matt Damon and Ben Affleck reunited on stage at Sunday’s Oscars ceremony, looking just as close as they were almost 20 years ago when their 1997 movie Good Will Hunting nabbed them the coveted Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.

The pair came out to present the award for Best Original Screenplay, but Damon was introduced as “and guest” as part of host Jimmy Kimmel‘s ongoing rivalry with Damon.

Kimmel took things a step further when he conducted the orchestra to “play off” Damon as he tried to read the nominees.

Damon, 46, produced Manchester by the Sea, which is nominated for Best Picture, among other accolades. Two-time winner Affleck — his film Argo won Best Picture in 2012 — is likely at the ceremony to support brother Casey Affleck, who is looking to pair his Golden Globes win with a Best Actor Oscar for his performance in the drama.

Damon and Affleck, 44, recently threw it back to their critically acclaimed film — which also saw a Best Supporting Actor win for the late Robin Williams — in October, joining fellow Bostonian John Krasinski in a live reading of the movie alongside Krasinski and wife Emily Blunt, among others.

MONDAY 03/23/98 LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA 70th ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS AT THE SHRINE AUDITORIUM Pressroom: Matt Damon & Ben Affleck Photo: Evan Agostini/ImageDirect
Credit: Evan Agostini/ImageDirect

The actors surprised the audience, emerging onstage during The New York Times’ Live Read New York, which was hosted by Krasinski. The Office alum told audience members he would be playing Damon’s part of Will and then, after Damon appeared, said Affleck’s role Chuckie was “a better role anyway.” Of course, Affleck arrived to take his rightful place as Chuckie at that point.

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Ben Affleck, John Krasinski and Matt Damon
Credit: Nicola Bailey for The New York Times

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“We were both in love with the same thing – acting and filmmaking,” Damon told Entertainment Tonight last year of his connection with Affleck, whom he co-founded production company Pearl Street Films alongside in 2012. “I think we fed on each other’s obsession during really formative, important years and that bonded us for life.”

In the same vein, Affleck told ET earlier this year, “I can’t tell you how valuable it is to have somebody who’s been through things with you, ups and downs, who knows what your life experience is like, who can identify with that.”

“It’s an incredibly valuable friendship and it’s very precious and so is my friendship with my brother. I don’t know what I would do without those guys.”