FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Garner and Smith Share More Than Just Ben Affleck
The pair bonded over their new movie, diet secrets and a love of McGriddles
By Michelle Foody at Hollywood Today
HOLLYWOOD, CA (rushprnews) 01/27/2007 — The new romantic comedy opening this weekend, â€œCatch & Release,â€ stars all-American sweetheart Jennifer Garner and shamelessly funny indie cult director Kevin Smith, and unlikely duo to say the least. For hardbody Garner, the project was a kick in the pants, a motivator for getting off the couch and shedding weight after the birth six months ago of her child with husband Ben Affleck.
Which couldnâ€™t have been easy around Smith, who apparently was on a strict anti-fitness regime. â€œI gained about 30 pounds making â€˜Catch & Release,â€™â€ said the director/actor (â€œClerks,â€ and the Affleck-starring â€œDogmaâ€). â€œI was on the Atkins diet at the same time so go figure. Since Iâ€™m not directing where normally Iâ€™m on the set all the time, you got a lot of down time in your trailer and youâ€™re just sitting in front of the TV eating as well. All I did was gorge the whole movie.â€
Which made it hard on Garner, known for her lean, mean look in films like â€œDaredevilâ€ and â€œElektraâ€ as well as her hit series â€œAlias.â€ â€œIt took me a long, long time before the weight started to come off.Â Finally it got a little ridiculous and I got on the treadmill,â€ she told Hollywood Today. â€œI cut out bagels and muffins and croissants, all the good stuff and went back to a salad once a day with some protein.â€
His expanding body caused a bit of friction for director Susanne Grant, when it came time for the scene involving a rubdown from Juliette Lewis on a motel bed.
Â â€œBefore we started filming Susanne said, â€˜You’re gonna take your shirt off right?â€™ I said, â€˜Youâ€šre out of your f**kinâ€™ mind. I donâ€™t take my shirt off for my wife, why would I take it off for you?â€™â€ Â He won.Â The good-natured actor continued, â€œIt was weird heading into that scene knowing that Susanne was sitting on the sidelines; the only woman on the planet was wishing Iâ€™d take my shirt off.â€
But he wasnâ€™t the only one keeping his clothes on.Â Garner threw her weight around when it came to scenes involving an itty-bitty bikini, and the leading lady won out: the scenes were nixed.Â Itâ€™s worth it to hear her gush about the joys of motherhood, and genuine happinessâ€¦or at least it is a little envy-inducing.
â€œTo kind of stop and breathe and slow down and be at (my daughterâ€™s) pace has been such a gift to me. Itâ€™s always such a wonderful thing to sit down on the floor and play. It does change you as a personâ€, insisted Garner, wife of Affleck, who and ex-wife of Scott Foley (â€œFelicityâ€).Â
â€œ[Ben] does a good job. There is nothing more emotional than seeing your partner and the man you love with your baby at any time; the first time, the second time, today. Thereâ€™s nothing more beautiful than that.â€ Â Lucky girl, and sweet to boot.
The woman has a megastar husband, a doted upon baby girl, her killer body back, and a new film.Â One canâ€™t help but feel like maybe playing superheroes has rubbed off on the star of â€œElektraâ€ and â€œAlias.â€Â Is the rumored role of Wonder Woman on her horizon?
â€œIâ€™m always tempted because I have so much fun with that stuffâ€¦We (my stunt double and I) get kind of revved up and all the men on the set are like, â€˜Woah!â€™. There is a part of me that likes it, I think its fun but I much prefer just a good old roleâ€¦ I think Iâ€™ve filled my superhero card.â€
Â The dynamic Garner did admit to one weakness, for which she puts full blame on Smithâ€”who happens to be a good pal of hubby Affleck, whom he directed back in their low-budget days, on â€œChasing Amy.â€
â€œKevin introduced me to McDonaldâ€™s McGriddles which Iâ€™ve never had before in my life. He started bringing them to the set for me after stopping at McDonaldâ€™s. Those are pancakes stuffed with syrup inside of them and then sausage. They bowled me over. Thatâ€™s one thing you cut out when you want to lose weight!â€
If a greasy breakfast sandwich is the ugliest skeleton in your closet, you are doing just fine by Hollywood standards.Â Just ask her â€œGigliâ€-star husband. Â
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