Ben Affleck celebrated his 44th birthday in Montana on a family vacation

"Suicide Squad" - European Premiere
In our post yesterday about Mayim Bialik’s preachy video on co-parenting with her ex, several of you mentioned that this was Jennifer Garner’s playbook as well: spending vacations and holidays together, making sure that everything seems “normal” for the kids, and also getting along for the sake of the kids. Only in Garner and Affleck’s case, it’s not entirely clear to either the public or probably their kids that they’re actually separated. “Sources” may insist that they’re not together one week and then claim the next that Affleck is trying to win Garner back and that she might be open to it. So it’s hard to tell what’s going on, particularly when the celebrity-friendly outlets run stories like this:

[Affleck] celebrated his Aug. 15 birthday with ex Jennifer Garner and their three children while on a family trip to a Montana resort where they own a condo.

“The family spent the week together and enjoyed outdoor activities like hiking, biking and swimming,” a source close to the couple tells PEOPLE.

Despite separating after 10 years of marriage in June 2015, the actors have maintained an amicable relationship, the focal point of which is their three children – Violet, 10, Seraphina, 7, and 4-year-old Samuel.

The family has spent a large amount of time together, including a month-long trip to Europe during the summer while Affleck was filming Justice League in London.

“Ben is happiest when he’s spending time with his family,” adds the source. “It was a great birthday.”

[From People]

Good for them, but here’s the thing – I doubt we would have heard anything about this if they didn’t tell People Magazine. There aren’t any paparazzi in Montana (although I wouldn’t be surprised if some “found” them, Garner said they would get papped in Timbuktu) so we wouldn’t have seen pictures and it’s not like everyone is wondering where they are. Instead of recording confessional videos describing the play-by-play of her coparenting and maybe-reconciliation with Affleck, Garner (or maybe Affleck, I have no idea) tells the press what they’re doing. I wonder if any other of Affleck’s exes would have stuck around so long. We’ve seen how both Jennifer Lopez and Gwyneth Paltrow have handled their respective divorces with kids. Both of them have been civil to friendly to their exes, with Paltrow striving to perfect divorce and tell us about it, but they’ve each moved on to other partners. Garner isn’t doing that for whatever reason, and neither is Affleck. It just occurred to me that last year we heard what Affleck did for his birthday too – he went to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter with Garner and their kids.

Jennifer Garner Going To Lunch In Santa Monica

Suicide Squad European Premiere

Jennifer Garner Leaves Gym In LA

Garner is shown out on Saturday. Affleck is shown at the London premiere of Suicide Squad on 8-3-16. Credit: WENN and Fame

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84 Responses to “Ben Affleck celebrated his 44th birthday in Montana on a family vacation”

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  1. Josefina says:

    Is it just me or does he kinda look like Jimmy Fallon?

    • Heather says:

      Whatever he did to “freshen up” around the eyes seems to be settling in and he’s looking sort of normal…but yeah, a little more like Jimmy Fallon than usual.

  2. Zombie says:

    What is the idea with his hair? Did he do something to his face?

    • Hadleyb says:

      He looks terrible! I mean Matt Damon might look older, weathered but he looks good, real kwim?

      Ben looks like he had some work done… and he looks awful! He doesn’t look younger just odd.

      • Heather says:

        I feel like Matt got an eye lift a while ago. It’s settled in now, but you can still see those crazy high brows in the Martian.

      • Zuzus Girl says:

        Agree. Matt did have some work done but it was more subtle than whatever the heck hot Ben’s forehead a while back.

    • INeedANap says:

      OMG I have no idea how no one is talking about the poor wax imitation of Ben Affleck that is walking around. When women get small changes done it’s all anyone can talk about, but Batfleck gets a new face — a bizarre one at that — and people pretend it’s fine.

      He’s squarely in the Uncanny Valley now.

    • Tate says:

      He looks awful.

    • Hannah says:

      The twitter pics of him at the Harry Potter play the other night are even worse IMO. His face is so bloated. That’s the alcohol and coke doing that to him. I wouldn’t be surprised if there were a nanny sent to London with Violet just as a precaution. I don’t know that I’d trust him with a child by himself, even if Violet is at an age where she isn’t exactly helpless if something happened.

    • Chaine says:

      “The Artist Formerly Known as Ben Affleck”

      • Pandy says:

        Good one, ha ha. I don’t really care about their marriage/divorce anymore. Nannygate was fun, the holiday family joy thing is dull. Me want scandal lolll.

    • Melissa says:

      He looks like a different person every time I see him these days. Just a few weeks ago he looked pretty normal at Comic-Con. Now he’s back to looked bloated and tired, and that’s after a supposedly relaxing week in Montana. Maybe it wasn’t “a great birthday” after all? Sure doesn’t look like it from the puffy-faced pics of him at Cursed Child. Did he spend the days with the kids and the nights with Jack Daniels?

  3. BeBeA says:

    Is he running for something?

  4. Bichon says:

    Oh man, I’m glad you all said that because I was like “that’s not Ben Affleck” when I first saw this.

  5. Bek says:

    There is a picture of him in london with his daughter at a harry potter play he looks like a bloated mess. All this positive PR spin about Affleck makes me wonder if some tabloid is about to publish something bad about him.

  6. poppy says:

    “Ben is happiest when he’s spending time with his family”

  7. Hannah says:

    People Mag got the Montana story from social media and tumblr. That’s why it is so blazingly generic. There is a really creepy tumblr about Affleck and Garner. Yesterday morning that tumblr posted a summary of the social media sightings of Ben and Jen in Montana last week. Then several hours later People had their own article along with a “source” (prob the tumblr owner, honestly) who gave very very generic statements. “Ben is happiest when he is spending time with his family.” LOL, sure, Jan. If by family you mean blackjack dealers at the casino with strippers all around, then yeah, sure. Anyway, I was already of the opinion that People is no longer the bastion of integrity that it once was but this just proves it to me.

    • Kate says:

      Yup, I read they were in Montana on a Ben Affleck Tumblr site almost verbatim. Plus this news is so belated, his bday was a week ago. Also the “hiking, swimming, etc.” That’s on Big Sky’s website under “Things to do”. No news here, let’s move on.

  8. minx says:

    I know he’s an actor, but he should just age more naturally. He’s looking really peculiar.

  9. Hejhej says:

    Didn’t Goop and Chris actually split quite a while before they announced it? I think the only strange thing about Jennifer and Ben is that they keep talking to the press. Otherwise I think it’s only a good thing that they try to keep things as civil as possible for the kids.

    I think maybe part of it is that he’s having problems staying off the wagon. Considering what shit other people do when they fall of the wagon, I think it’s rather lightweight that Ben looks like shit and looks misearable around his ex. At least he mostly seems to hurt himself.

  10. Astrid says:

    Their continued relationship baffles me.

    • justme says:

      As does Ben’s face.

    • Naya says:

      I think its only baffling if we bought in to the predictions. We spent so many years being fed a narrative “he hates her; she has trapped him” that when they split people expected him to run for the hills. So at every turn theres be an explanation, “he is waiting for Dawn of Justice”, “he is waiting for her movie”, “they want to wait a year”, they are waiting for the spotlight to turn”, they are sorting out the finances”, et cetera. Here we are, over a year later and they are still holidaying together and neither has started a relationship. This is the point at which we accept that every premise was wrong and we know nothing.

      • tina says:

        @Naya – I agree with you. There is obviously more of a relationship than the tabloids/gossip sites led us to believe. It may be a dysfunctional relationship or a co-dependent relationship – but there is something there. They have been together a long time and I believe there are strong feelings on both sides. I would be surprised if they weren’t both still in therapy.

      • Hannah says:

        Well to be fair People Mag has maintained all along that they would only file when everything had been sorted out and a judge could sign off on it. The other predictions came from here, there, everywhere on the internet. Ben is busy filming, not sure when he is supposed to work on the divorce. She is busy doing gym and church strolls for the paps.

      • J says:

        I don’t know – I was at first very intrigued by this whole cooparenting and we still live together routine. Coming from a background where my friends divorced parents 30 years later still can’t be in the same room with each other, I just could not believe there was not more to it than for the kids. Also with everything he has supposedly done to her (countless affairs etc), I don’t know how she could continue to be so close to him no matter what kind of great mother she thinks she is. But lately a lot of people are trying to say they successfully do the same thing (matin bialick yesterday). What was curious to me was when she did the today show interview a few weeks ago, she really missed an opportunity to tell us how this whole “modern family” works and using her brand to sell it as her new persona. She gave us a few quick sound bites; were a modern family, Ben and I are friends and we have no choice we have to put the kids first. She never reLly got into it, ala gwenth Paltrow or the way Mayim did yesterday. That does lead me to believe that there is something more still going on here. It’s like she does not want to come out and say we’re done, our finances are so complicated that it’s taking forever and we have successfully learned to parent together and here is how we do it. I feel like she is leaving that door open so that if they do get back together – she did not publically herself say it.

      • Kitten says:

        So spot-on, Naya.

      • Katey says:

        My take is that, as a big time cheater herself, she was willing to look the other way when that happened as long as it stayed out of the press. I am not convinced that she cares what he does, including drinking and gambling, as long as no one finds out about it. She is all about image and he was publicly humiliating her with his various shenanigans (getting thrown out of that casino, Finding Your Roots, etc). And I think the Today show interview was a brief thing and she simply didn’t need to go into great detail. She was there to promote a movie not give us a status update on her divorce. Mayim’s video was done deliberately and is not the same thing at all. I think you are reading too much into it.

      • JoJo says:

        @J – I read it differently. Contrary to all of the media buzz about them spending so much time together, it seems like they’ve spent very little time together this summer. A few weeks in Europe in May and then a few days in MT in late August so the kids could see him for his bday. When he has come home briefly, it seems like Jen is somewhere else (Paris during July 4, her W Va trip, etc.) I sort of read it like they really are done with each other as a couple and are now just tolerating each other for the kids (or they do have an amicable friendship.) She may say as little as possible because there may be some tension there right now too. Otherwise, it seems she would have gone to London more this summer or vice versa, etc. Unless she actually is there this week too…

      • Melissa says:

        There were many weeks this summer when she could have been in London with the kids if she had wanted to be and wasn’t. Didn’t appear to have anything going on, just gym, church and shopping strolls. I am surprised that the oldest child is the only one over there. I’m assuming school starts soon for them and they won’t be able to go over again after this.

      • J says:

        I don’t think Jen is there. More photos of Ben with Violet in London this week on Twitter. I agree with Hannah if she (or he) had wanted them all to spend the entire summer in London together they could have done it. Does not seem as though Jen worked a lot this summer – nothing that she could not have come in for a week for. I think it’s just te for them to file already.

      • mocha latte says:

        I saw gym pics from today. She’s not in the UK. I wonder why not? Being good co-parents and great friends and all. He has extra time off but only gets the one kid? Interesting.

  11. QQ says:

    he looks like he is going through a wind tunnel.. what IS this hair supposed to distract us from? Cause It’s not working

  12. justme says:

    OK, so Ben’s obviously had some work done but since we’re not supposed to talk about Renee Zellwegger’s work, then we shouldn’t be talking about Ben’s. Is he going to write a piece about his face too?

  13. Miss Jupitero says:

    He’s only 44? This is sad. He looks dreadful.

    I truly do not get Hollywood. Here are all these people who have more money than God, access to leisure that is unheard of for most other people, access to the best of everything, staff to do all of the heavy-lifting…. and they come out looking like this.

  14. MrsBPitt says:

    Ben always looks like he just woke up and jumped out of bed!

  15. Mar says:

    My analogy is that he really wants to make it work because this relationship normalizes him. She figures she will put him on a year or two probation ( because she is in love with him but unsure what he’s capable of) and for now the public thinks they are not together so there’s much less pressure on the relationship.

    • JoJo says:

      I have always suspected this exactly as well, although at this point they just seem like brother and sister- I don’t see a shred of anything else there. I can’t see how these two could ever go back to being the “happy couple.” My guess is Ben has dated or hooked up casually through all of this, although I wouldn’t doubt it if Jen hasn’t. Also, the quote about Ben being happiest with his family is old – from a People article a long time ago. Guess they threw it in for good measure to try to build up their story. I also think it’s telling that Jen didn’t go back to London with him, and he wasn’t part of her Clinton fundraiser in Montana (like the couple-y one Jessica Biehl and JT are throwing together) or her W. Virginia charity tour recently. I kind of think more and more that’s they’re really done – not sure why they don’t pull the trigger though. Assets maybe? No prenup.

      • Jayna says:

        Yeah, I think they live their lives apart and have been. They get together for kid things. It’s only been a year for their divorce. They have a lot of financial holdings. Gwynneth’s took two years, if not longer. Another celeb couple, Amy Poehler and Will Arnett, took four years until their divorce was finalized this summer. They were definitely living separate lives.

        I don’t think Ben lives in the house. I think he stays in the guest house at times.

        They are over. Ben is probably on his second girlfriend by now, but keeps it out of sight out of respect for Jen and he doesn’t want the public scrutiny. He’s fine with the down low.

    • Nancy says:

      Normalizes him how? Getting thrown out of casinos isn’t normal. Boffing the nanny isn’t normal. His behavior has been erratic for years and we’ve all been witness to it. If you click on either of their tags on this site, there have been rumors about marital problems and divorce for literally years. No one thinks that they had a good marriage.

      • Mar says:

        I meant normalizes himself in his own mind…… We all know he’s a complete wreck.
        Maybe he feels like his life has some meaning when he’s with them.

  16. NGBoston says:

    Affleck looks like shit. That’s all I’ve got.

  17. Nancy says:

    Only a condo in Montana for two adults and three kids? I’ve read articles about that resort (the Yellowstone Club). It is truly for the fabulously wealthy. A condo? Cheap. LOL.

  18. Wren33 says:

    I think she is totally over her, and that is what allows her to spend time with him in a drama-free way. Like an annoying brother you have a soft spot for.

  19. marc kile says:

    Jennifer Garner just seems so phony and forced anyone else feel the same?

    • frivolity says:


      • Loca says:

        Jennifer definitely comes off super phony all the time. She wants to be perceived as the sweet nice person all the time. I can see from behind the scenes from certain videos her stance can change and she actually appears grumpy and irritable at times. Anyhow everyone has their days but why fake it all the time. She won’t let go for dear life. It’s time they each have their separate time with the kids. If Ben was the most happiest with his family why was he flying around with the nanny.

    • Mary Mary says:

      Marc: Yep, she tries too hard and it gives the impression that she isn’t genuine nor expressing how she really feels about anything.

      I think this is how much of Hollywood operates; say what you think your perceived image requires to keep the bs going in order to sell, movies.

    • Melissa says:

      No, you are not the only one who feels that way. I don’t think there’s anything genuine about her. She is a big cheater herself and the way she’s playing the poor-me-Ben-sucks card these days is just pathetic. She cheated on both Husband #1 and Michael Vartan with Ben, and I mean, you know what they say: you lose them the way you got them, what goes around comes around, karma is a big b etc. She’s not some overgrown Girl Scout turned Betty Crocker Suzy Homemaker that her pr team wants us to think she is. Plus the way that she insists that her upper lip is real is just a big WTF. Fake just like the boobs that magically appeared several years ago. And another thing… for someone who went all Grrrrl Power and spoke of refusing to be the ashes, she certainly is taking a very passive role in actually divorcing him. She still lets him live at home FFS.

  20. Bobafelty says:

    Can they just divorce already?

    And speaking from experience, I think kids get confused by this happy face coparenting. There is a line between doing family activities when only separated and suddenly making the kids think you might reconcile by spending time together.

  21. Katey says:

    Ben is strong, smart and brave. He is a model of clean, healthy, Christian living, and any woman would be lucky to have him. Jen was lucky to have had him for 10 years.

  22. LA says:

    If they got popped in MT, they’d run the risk of being kicked out of YC. No paps allowed. Ever.

  23. Jazmin says:

    Are those keys in his right pocket?

  24. Jayna says:

    Ben just needs to take off weight and have his face leaner again and put down the bottle.

  25. Hannah says:

    There are new pics of him and Violet in London, I guess from today. His face looks normal again. Bizarre. Every day he has a new face. Maybe he is possessed by a demon. They’re on the benaffleckturkey_official instagram account.

  26. SM says:

    Yeah, yeah he is such a family guy. What I want to know though is whether he treated himself for some bithday botox or some alone time with the nanny?

  27. Joni says:

    So the pretty new nanny accompanied them to London (there’s pics on twitter). Weird that he needs a nanny for one kid but I guess it’s because he’s filming?

    • Hannah says:

      They aren’t filming. Cavill is in Miami, Momoa is off in Ireland I think — this is all per social media. I think they must have got two weeks off and this is week 2. Jen and the other two kids are still in LA so why the nanny? Can he not handle one older child by himself?

    • Hannah says:

      Yes. DM has gym stroll pics from today.

      • ana says:

        She is now in NYC.

      • ana says:

        Sometimes those pap stroll after gym sessions are fabricated. So don’t believe what you see.

      • J says:

        @ Ana – Jen is in NYC based on what report? 🙂

      • georgie says:

        Fabricated? You think they photoshopped her into pics from today? What a bizarre statement.
        @J Not Ana, but it’s from one random and highly unlikely twitter sighting. No pic. Jen must have teleported to NYC after her gym stroll in LA this afternoon.

  28. mocha latte says:

    I saw pics on Superficial of Ben outside someplace chain smoking and looking like he wants to die. Maybe Jen and the other two kids are on their way over? LOL I mean, seriously. Is it really that bad, Ben?

  29. Marta says:

    Her shoes – she needs a footwear intervention 🙁

    • mocha latte says:

      Sis, she wears ugly stuff purposely because she thinks it fits with her image as being so down-to-earth that she can’t be bothered with fashion. She’s just so busy with her kids, you know. The army of nannies and housekeepers and drivers that she employs really just do nothing.

  30. Diane says:

    Facebook poster says they are in Montana again now. Is this the affleck garner version of Pokemon Go? Kinda feels like it.

    • J says:

      You are really funny lol!
      I don’t think they are in Montana – that poster was probably referring to the flood of articles hitting the net yesterday and today. There is a tumblr post with a fan pic of Ben in harrods today in what looks like the toy department. So my guess is that Violet and nanny #2 (the one we see less often) are still with Ben in London. Jen based on the gym pics still in LA.

      • georgie says:

        Toys from Harrods? Backstage at Cursed Child? I guess it pays to have a parent who feels guilt like that. All three of those kids will be spoiled rotten, IMO.

        The nanny is super pretty. Jen must really be done with him to trust him around her. Baffles me how people continue to think that they are working things out.

      • Diane says:

        Haha thanks. The poster lives in Bozeman, and it was posted 6 hours ago. I wonder though. They have become so sought after it would not surprise me if there were planted items all over to throw off where they are to give them some privacy. They shouldn’t be on 24/7 for our tracking pleasure! Though it has become a fascinating study, there are real children involved.

      • Jupiter says:

        @Diane I’ll save my tears for poor people who don’t call the paps. Ben and Jen brought it all on themselves and their poor kids have to live like this so Mommy and Daddy can make bad movies. Jen is truly delusional if she thinks that they can’t move away to escape the paps. They didn’t follow her to WV, did they? Or Montana last week. Or actually, anywhere. She enjoys the daily pap attention, always has a huge smile ready for them, completely unbothered, she needs to just admit it.

      • Diane says:

        It was about the kids having privacy with their parents that I was thinking. the consumers, us, are creating the demand for pictures and information on this family and it’s become something of a feeding frenzy. If there was less or no demand, the constant papping wouldn’t be profitable. Vicious cycle and the kids are still innocents. That’s all. I am part of the cycle too. I think it’s the reality TV world we live in. Sorry I am waxing philosophical.

      • Jupiter says:

        I see it differently. Ben and Jen were/are always talking about their family, their roles as parents, anecdotes about their kids, their marriage, their divorce, etc. They purposely drove up interest in their private life which in turn caused the paps to follow them around. They are what drives interest in their family life.

  31. Jag says:

    He’s only 44? I thought he was in his 50’s the way he got work done. And the work still makes him look “off.”