"She's right at the point where I think she might be passing me," the actor said of his daughter's Spanish skills

By Benjamin VanHoose
March 05, 2020 08:53 AM
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Ben Affleck may be looking to book a Spanish tutor in the near future.

On Wednesday, the Oscar winner, 47, visited The Kelly Clarkson Show, where he spoke about picking up Spanish as a second language while working on a television series that shot in Mexico when he was a teenager. Now, Affleck claims to speak the language “passively” — and his oldest child, 14-year-old Violet, is about to surpass his fluency.

“She’s always been a very good student, and she’s been interested in Spanish, and so I would often help her,” Affleck explained on the talk show. “Now, all of a sudden, she’s gotten into the grade where she’s, like, in the harder Spanish classes and she’s getting better.”

He added, “She’s right at the point where I think she might be passing me.”

The actor — who has done some bilingual interviews while on press tours for his films in the past — said he wasn’t about to let his daughter outdo her dad in the Spanish-speaking department. Affleck then mentioned that Violet now critiques his Spanish, scolding him about his tense usage.

“I was like, ‘Nope. This is not happening,'” he joked. “I don’t mind that I can’t do your math homework when you’re 14 years old, but you are not going to be better at Spanish than me. So I’ve decided now I gotta take classes; I gotta do something to keep up.”

Ben Affleck
Emma McIntyre/Getty

Affleck also shares daughter Seraphina Rose, 11, and son Samuel, 7, with ex-wife Jennifer Garner. Last month, the father opened up about how his oldest also likes to poke fun at him about his emoji usage.

“My daughter is so funny, she teases me, she’s 14 and she’s like: ‘Why do they let you on this group chat? You don’t know what you’re talking about. Don’t pretend you have any idea what’s going on,’” the actor said his daughter told him after she discovered he was in a group chat with his younger costars.

He added: “Then she’s like, ‘What are they saying on the group chat?’ which is only appropriate very rarely for my daughter, but it’s a lot of fun. It’s a way to stay in touch. It’s fun.”

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Jennifer Garner with her kids, August 2018
Vince Flores/Startraksphoto.com

In his new drama The Way Back, Affleck plays a high school basketball coach who finds redemption while struggling with alcoholism. Recently opening up about his own experiences with addiction, the star thanked Garner, 47, for being supportive, and reflected on how the divorce affected his children.

“I didn’t want to get divorced, I didn’t want to be a divorced person, I really didn’t want to be a split family with my children,” he said. “It upset me because it meant I wasn’t who I thought I was and that was so painful and so disappointing. In myself.”

The Way Back is in theaters everywhere on Friday.