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Ben Affleck clarifies those Jennifer Garner remarks: ‘I was saying the exact opposite’

A man posing in a dark suit
Ben Affleck arrives at the 2019 premiere of “Triple Frontier” in New York City.
(Johannes Eisele / AFP/Getty Images)

Ben Affleck was eager to defend himself Wednesday night after his comments about his marriage to Jennifer Garner sparked a backlash he didn’t see coming.

On the latest episode of “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” the “Tender Bar” star was quick to address the controversy surrounding his sweeping interview with radio host Howard Stern, during which he partially blamed his marriage to Garner for his drinking habits.

Unprompted, the Oscar winner told Kimmel he was “really happy with” his appearance on “The Howard Stern Show” — before feeling stunned and disappointed to see “clickbait” headlines taking his remarks out of context.

“I thought, ‘Wow, I should do more honest, exploratory, self-evaluating things.’ And I started seeing all this stuff come up on Twitter, and I was like, ‘Well, what is this?’” he said.

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“They had literally taken the conversation that I had had for two hours and made it seem as if I was saying the exact opposite of what I said.”

While speaking with Stern earlier this week about alcoholism, family and divorce, Affleck speculated that he would “probably still” be drinking if he had remained married to Garner. The “Last Duel” actor and the “Yes Day” star, both 49, split in 2015 after 10 years of marriage and share three children.

“It’s part of why I started drinking … because I was trapped,” Affleck told Stern.

“I was like, ‘I can’t leave ’cause of my kids, but I’m not happy. What do I do?’ What I did was drink a bottle of scotch and fall asleep on the couch, which turned out not to be the solution.”

On ‘The Howard Stern Show,’ Ben Affleck said he would ‘probably still’ be drinking if he had stayed married to Jennifer Garner. Twitter isn’t having it.

Affleck told Kimmel he’s happy to see himself trending on social media for “sad Batman” or “Dunkin’ Donuts” memes, but he’s “got to draw a line” at commentary that could affect his kids.

“They said that I had blamed my ex-wife for my alcoholism and that I was trapped ... just made me out to be the worst, most insensitive, stupid, awful guy,” he said.

“That’s not true. I don’t believe that. It’s the exact opposite of who I am ... and I would never want my kids to think I would ever say a bad word about their mom.”

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner have split, the couple announced Tuesday, confirming rumors that had bubbled up in earnest about a month ago.

The director and producer, who is dating former fiancée Jennifer Lopez, also responded to rumors that George Clooney will appear alongside his Batman in the forthcoming DC movie “The Flash.”

“If he is, he hasn’t told me,” Affleck said cautiously. “As far as I know, he doesn’t want to return to that level [of visibility].”


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