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Did Jennifer Garner Save Ex-Ben Affleck's New Movie?

Gettyimages | Pascal Le Segretain
By Savannah Pointer

Ben Affleck’s time in the spotlight has been fraught with drama as the nation has watched it’s on-screen love interest, action hero and superhero struggle with addiction and family life.

Affleck’s marriage to fellow actress Jennifer Garner resulted in three children and one very public divorce. Even though the couple vowed to co-parent as efficiently as possible, Affleck’s recent relapse into alcoholism caused Garner to once again become personally involved in Affleck’s life. The actor was making headlines with his strange and irrational behavior before starting on his recent film project.

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Garner Stepped In To Assist The Father Of Her Children In Find Help

Gettyimages | Frazer Harrison

When her ex-husband started to spin out of control, it was Garner who was instrumental in getting Affleck to rehab, and, as recent reports have illuminated, she was also one of the people that kept his recent project, The Way Back from being taken away from him.

Garner reportedly begged The Way Back director Gavin O’Conner into holding off so that Affleck could continue on the project. Garner’s influence was reported by MSN who quoted O’Connor’s interview in which he said that, “Just as we started prepping the movie, Ben fell off the wagon,” refrencing Affleck’s recent stint in rehab.

'The Way Back' Director Credited Garner With Getting Production Slowed

Gettyimages | Vivien Killilea

“So he ended up going to rehab, and I didn’t know if the movie was over. The studio certainly thought the movie was over. His ex-wife, Jennifer Garner, called me up and told me that when he went to rehab, he took a basketball with him. She said, ‘Gavin, he’s asking you, please don’t pull the plug on the movie. He really wants to do this.’”

O’Connor was reportedly swayed by Garner and in turn spoke to the team who was making the film, and they waited on Affleck.

The Director Worked With Affleck As He Recovered

Gettyimages | Emma McIntyre

“So he had about a week of detoxing because he really went off the deep end, and after a week, I was able to go see him,” O’Connor explained.

“We spent half a day together and figured out a way to do this that will work for him because most importantly he needed to recover and needed to get his sobriety on track. That overtook everything. And then he got out the day before we started shooting. So we had a very raw, very vulnerable guy showing up for our first day of shooting.”

Affleck Shared His Grief About Losing Garner During The Press For 'The Way Back'

Gettyimages | Kevin Winter

While doing press for the film, Affleck admitted that the implosion of his marriage to Garner was “the biggest regret” of his life.

During the filming of The Way Back, Affleck reportedly broke down after filming an emotional scene with on-screen ex-wife Janina Gavankar, telling her “I failed you,” he says. “I failed our marriage.”

“It was really important, without being mawkish or false, that he make amends to her — that he take accountability for the pain that he and only he has caused,” Affleck said of the scene. Gavin O’Connor, the movie’s director, said that Affleck had a “total breakdown” after completing the scene.

“It was like a floodgate opened up,” O’Connor said. “It was startling and powerful. I think that was a very personal moment in the movie. I think that was him.”

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