Matt Damon rather infamously said in 2011 that he wouldn’t mind if President Barack Obama — whom the actor had supported in 2008 — was a one-term president because he’d rather have a “one-term president with some balls who actually got stuff done.” (The comment even earned Damon some flak from the president himself.)
But, he still did his part to give Obama a second term, admitting that he still voted for him in November.
“I assume there will be some Supreme Court appointments in this next term; that alone was reason to vote for him,” Damon told Playboy magazine in its January 2013 issue. “I don’t think I said anything a lot of people weren’t thinking. It’s easier now more than ever in my life to feel the fix is in, the game is rigged and no matter how hard you work to change things, it just doesn’t matter.”
Damon also was asked for his thoughts on Clint Eastwood’s performance at the Republican National Convention (the two worked together on 2010’s “Hereafter”).
“I heard the backlash, but I never saw the whole thing because I just didn’t want to see my friend … you know. Look, his knowledge of filmmaking is so vast and deep that he can wing it beautifully on the set. What he did at the RNC was an unrehearsed bit he decided to do at the last minute. You can’t go onstage and do 12 minutes of stand-up completely unrehearsed. But I agree with what Bill Maher said — Clint killed it at the convention for 12 minutes, and the audience loved him. I wouldn’t do that unless I spent a month rehearsing.”
Damon’s newest flick, “Promised Land,” has him playing a salesperson trying to persuade homeowners to sell their natural gas drilling rights, which means that their land will ultimately be “fracked,” a term used to describe a process by which gas is released through drilling and pressurized fluid. The issue of fracking has become a political hot potato lately, in part because of the 2010 Oscar-nominated documentary, “Gasland” (and subsequent counter-movies, including “Truthland” and “FrackNation”). In May, Al Gore put his supportbehind Vermont’s effort to ban fracking, citing environmental concerns.
Damon explained what politics, if any, are behind “Promised Land.”
“We went to the studio saying, ‘Who f—king wants to go see an anti-fracking movie?’ and were all in agreement. When we were working on the script, it was about wind farms, but we changed it to fracking — a good issue because the stakes are so high. That sh*t is real. They’re debating about letting it happen in New York now. To us, the movie was really about American identity. We loved the characters because they felt like real people making the kinds of compromises you have to just to live your life.”
Damon said he isn’t so naive to think that any politician would ever move to make serious action against fracking.
“We’re at a point where politicians don’t really get any benefit from engaging with long-term issues. Instead, it’s all about the next election cycle. Those guys in the House don’t do anything now but run for office. So unless they can find some little thing that zips them up a couple of points in the polls, they’re not interested. There’s a consensus among scientists, though, that we face serious long-term issues. They’re saying that unless we engage with those issues, we’re genuinely f*cked. The way it looks, we’re going to wait until one of those big issues smacks us.”