Ben Affleck, 46, quickly rebounded from his split with girlfriend Lindsay Shookus, 38, and has been spotted around L.A. with 22-year-old Playboy model Shauna Sexton. But a source tells PEOPLE in the magazine’s new issue this is not a surprising move for the actor.
“He is happy being able to date who he wants and not feel tied down to a serious relationship,” says a film source. “Lindsay was more serious about him. He enjoyed her company but was not looking for anything permanent now.”
Adds the source: “Ben likes a woman with brains and beauty but he also likes to be free to do what he wants.”
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As for ex Jennifer Garner, “Is she happy about him hanging out with a very young Playboy model? Certainly not,” another source says in the new issue. “But her concern right now is not who he is dating. What she ultimately cares about is his sobriety and whether she can rely on him to co-parent.”
Affleck and Garner, who announced their separation in 2015, are still hammering out the details of their divorce. They’re parents to Violet, 12, Seraphina, 9, and Samuel, 6.
On Aug. 16, just one day after his 46th birthday, Affleck took Sexton to dinner at Nobu restaurant in Malibu. “It looked like maybe a first date,” says a source adding, “she looked very cute and he seemed interested.” Three days after their dinner date, Sexton and Affleck were spotted together again at a Jack In The Box drive-thru and went back to his house while snacking on French fries. “They seemed to get along great. They were chatting and laughing,” says a source.
Shookus was the first person Affleck dated publicly after announcing his separation from ex-wife Jennifer Garner, 46, in 2015. The couple was last photographed together in July in Puerto Rico where he was filming The Last Thing He Wanted with Anne Hathaway.
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“It was amicable but unfortunately it didn’t work out,” partly because the relationship was often long distance, an Affleck pal
says of his relationship with the Saturday Night Live producer. “They truly cared for each other and tried to make it work. Unfortunately now is not the time.”
- With reporting by LINDA MARX