Ben Affleck's Most Infamous Bomb Led To His Directing Career

There's no denying a movie like "Gigli." It's one of those movies that transcended a normal, run-of-the-mill kind of bad and became a movie that was solely famous for being bad. We're not talking about so bad it's charming, like "The Room." No one wants to go to a brunch screening of "Gigli." No one is making dubstep remixes of "Gigli." Hell, it sounds like Ben Affleck doesn't even really want to talk about "Gigli," but considering the horrible (and also horribly offensive) film was the catalyst that propelled him into directing and introduced him to Jennifer Lopez, Affleck is stuck with it. It doesn't matter how many Academy Awards he nabs, because "Gigli" will always be staring him down through the rearview mirror.

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Affleck determinedly looked on the bright side of his "Gigli" role, saying:

If the reaction to Gigli hadn't happened, I probably wouldn't have ultimately decided, 'I don't really have any other avenue but to direct movies,' which has turned out to be the real love of my professional life ... So in those ways, it's a gift.

And he's right. Yes, he was in a bad movie that everyone loved to make fun of in 2003. Yes, people will still absolutely dunk on it now, in the year of our Lord 2022. But while we're cracking jokes at Affleck and J.Lo's expense, they're off making insane money, touching butts on a yacht, pursuing their professional dreams, and looking as good as ever. Also he's the unofficial Dunkin' poster boy, which has nothing to do with his directorial efforts, but it is good thing that's happening in his life. So, who's actually winning here?

The Movies That Gigli Made

And speaking of those aforementioned professional dreams, Affleck directed his first film, the haunting thriller "Gone Baby Gone," in 2007, a scant four years after "Gigli." (Should we start referring to anything post-2003 as 'AG'? Think about it and get back to me.) After that, he ratcheted up the tension with the dark heist "The Town" in 2010 and nabbed an Academy Award with the surprisingly light political thriller "Argo" in 2012. Besides the gift of directing, Affleck commented on how "Gigli" changed his life in another big way:

And I did get to meet Jennifer [Lopez], the relationship with whom has been really meaningful to me in my life."

That's a rather succinct way to talk about your girlfriend turned ex turned girlfriend, but it's your life, Affleck. We're just watching by the sidelines and trying to scrub "Gigli" from our minds. It might be the only thing we all have a common.