Jennifer Garner on paparazzi: ‘If you love something, you’ll do whatever you need’

Publicists for The Wall Street Journal sent us a PDF of a guest column where they asked “six luminaries” to speak on the topic of “adaptation.” The columns are all so interesting and include a piece from musician and artist Lonnie Holley, also known as The Sand Man. He was the seventh of 27 children and he has 15 children of his own. He wrote poignantly about the destruction of the planet. This line, about his grandmother, touched me. “My grandmama dug graves for the little girls killed in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing. She got down in the grave, all muddy, and when she got out she went home, washed her hands and cooked food for her children and grandchildren.” Other columnists include biologist Richard Dawkins, novelist Susan Choi, artist Terrasita Fernandez and actress Jennifer Garner. Garner’s segment is about balancing being a mom and being hounded by paparazzi, which is a topic she’s talked about before.

How do you adapt your career to your life? That’s a big question. Becoming someone who is well known requires an enormous adaptation. Who am I now? How do I go through the world? Then there’s having children and, in my case, a career that’s a very selfish one. The combination of those things is the largest adaptation of all. When I had kids, I started considering how jobs worked for my family. How much am I going to ask of my partner and kids? What’s worth it and what isn’t? Something Ben [Affleck] and I used to say to each other all the time is, ‘We have to adapt.’ We were surrounded by paparazzi. There were so many things you wouldn’t expect. We’d be left alone more at Disneyland than we would at a park in Santa Monica. But if you love something, you’ll do whatever you need to do.”

[From The Wall St. Journal]

Read that last line again, it’s in the title. Doesn’t it seem like Garner is calling the paparazzi inevitable? She considers that a part of her job. Remember how she told Dr. Oz that “if we move to Timbuktu, some person in Timbuktu’s gonna buy a camera and follow us around?” She said that in 2016, which was three years after she testified in front of the California State Assembly on behalf of stricter anti-paparazzi laws. Those laws went into effect, they helped protect children especially, and other celebrities including Halle Berry have said they made a difference. I don’t doubt that the paparazzi harass her family. However Halle has always been vocal in her dislike for the paparazzi. It sounds like Ben and Jen made a deal with each other and with the photographers that they work with them. How else would we get photos and videos of them going out for ice cream and heading to rehab? It’s like setting food out for feral cats and then complaining about all the cats who come around.

I also wanted to mention that Ben is definitely back together with Lindsay Shookus. After we reported on US’s story that they were talking again there were related stories confirming that in People and on E!.

Ben this weekend. He looks sober! I mean it was morning but still.



photos credit: Backgrid

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21 Responses to “Jennifer Garner on paparazzi: ‘If you love something, you’ll do whatever you need’”

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  1. Mia4s says:

    “But if you love something, you’ll do whatever you need to do.”

    See also: more than half of the time she spent married to Ben being cheated on and disrespected.

    Paparazzi are inevitable, but there’s an awful lot that can be done to minimize their presence and impact; and nether she or her ex seem remotely inclined to do so. Because of that this all seems a touch disingenuous.

    • Erika Wilhite says:

      Agreed. There are SO many celebrities we rarely or never see in paparazzi photos – many of them just as famous, or even more famous, than these two.

    • sid says:

      For years during the marriage to Affleck she was all about the pap stroll where she would show up at some random farmers’ market or other with all the children in tow. Calling this disingenuous is being kind.

      • Ewoksays says:

        Sid, so true. She calls the paps nonstop and seems to include her kids deliberately, in the pap walks. She has had no hits since Alias and had a horrible, racist, widely derided bomb last year. She’s famous for being famous but has this great-mum image. Nope, not buying it.

  2. a reader says:

    “He wrote poignantly about the destruction of the planet.”

    You know what helps destroy the planet? Overpopulation. We have finite resources. Having 15 children is both selfish and destructive. Yep, judging him.

    • Celebitchy says:

      Fair enough point *nods*

    • CairinaCat says:

      I’m wondering how many of his mother’s children lived out of the 27 though
      My great grandma who lived to the age of 99 and died when I was 28, so would have been born in the 1890’s? Got married when she was 13 had her first kid at 14. I’m pretty sure she had 16 babies but only 6 made it to adulthood.
      A bunch died as infants and under three years of age. (When people bitch about NOT wanting to vaccinate their kids this is what happened before vaccines, 10 out of 16 babies in one family dead)

      So I’m wondering if all 27 lived to adulthood, there is a reason people had more kids back then. Besides no birth control.

      • Mia4s says:

        Sure there are reasons he might of been one of 27 children in Jim Crow Alabama, and that’s why no one is judging his parents. But HE has 15 children in today’s world (all alive) and is writing about environmental issues? I see @A READER’s point, much like Garner lamenting the paparazzi, perhaps there are other topics he could have discussed that would have had less of a hypocritical feel.

    • Ewoksays says:

      I agree, A Reader. Our industrial civilisation is not for long. We could live like this for so long only thanks to hydrocarbons, which were a curse in disguise as they powered our energy-intensive lifestyles while heating up the planet, with lag time. I’m of the younger segment in the middle aged group so I’ve lived my life and checked off a lot of my bucket list, and I feel bad for the younger generation today.

  3. minx says:

    She can’t let go of those glory days and magazine covers.. It’s getting pathetic.

  4. Carolnr says:

    I think their children have a NORMAL routine & have NORMAL school activities & sports that they attend. The paps know their routine because they BOTH keep their children in their routines& they are both wanting their children to have a NORMAL childhood as much as possible!

    • MariettaJ says:

      Every celebrity that has children of course has a routine… and yet many others are never followed. Look at Julia Roberts, when is she ever followed? And she’s more famous than JG.

      I think she cultivated this mommy persona to make her seem “normal” but I don’t believe it for a second. But she plays the game well. The DM crazies have her as a saint…lol… she’s soooo far from it.

      • Carolnr says:

        Actually, Julia Roberts has been papped at her children’s activities , as well now.

      • Ewoksays says:

        “The DM crazies have her as a saint” – I suspect a lot of them if not most of them are paid posters. I have never seen negative posts disappear elsewhere on DM Showbiz like they do with her articles. Downvoting critical comments also active. It seems to me she has a team working this way on every single DM story about her. Hang on, Hugh Jackman and his team downvoting and getting he’s-gay comments deleted are also pretty intensive.

    • MariettaJ says:

      Except Julia Roberts was last seen with her children in December 4th of ’18…. JG is seen with her kids all the time. Julia Roberts kids are rarely with her. Just trying to make a point. It’s a rarity. But not with JG.

  5. Steff says:

    No one in Hollywood gets papped as much as Garner and Affleck. Weird huh?

  6. Mimisnowball says:

    So those Capital One and Neutrogena commercials were “worth it” to spend time away from her kids? lmao She’s so pathetic. Always complaining about the paparazzi that she has called for years. Tabloid attention is what has kept her relevant all of these years. She should be thanking them (and her best friends at the Daily Mail) for keeping her name above water. Without her connection to Ben, there is little interest in her.

  7. iris says:

    Talking about Ben again. I wonder how much of her day is spent thinking about him (probably a lot). She knows that even mentioning his name in the press will get tongues wagging. She just can’t quit him, can she? Her marriage to him was/is the only interesting thing about this tedious frau.

  8. paddingtonjr says:

    While reading this article, I kept thinking about the other celebrity families we don’t hear about. Matt Damon could have already moved his family to Australia for all we’ve seen of his children (aside from an event, have there ever been pictures published?), we only see Pink’s kids on social media or a few pictures while on tour or at an event. Does anyone remember that Scarlett Johnanson’s a mom? Since there’s been Hollywood and gossip columnists, there have been some celebrities have used the press and personal life to promote their image, those who have shielded their families while promoting themselves and those who simply don’t play the game.

    Jennifer’s image is down-to-earth, awe-shucks, mom-of-three and recent divorcee, just trying to keep it all together like all the other mothers in the world. I don’t doubt she’s a good mom and loves her kids, but she also needs to be papped being a good mom with her kids to promote her brand.

  9. Marianne says:

    Im sure sometimes the paparazzis do come find celebrities out and about by chance or someone else (like a shop employee) tips them off, but I think a good chunk of the time they are called by the celebs themselves. There are plently of celebrities who manage to not get papped or at least very rarely get papped, who can keep their children identity’s a secret. Or their pregnancy secret.