[ENTERTAINMENT]Affleck Cites 'Pearl Harbor'Authenticity

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[ENTERTAINMENT]Affleck Cites 'Pearl Harbor'Authenticity

HONOLULU - "Because 'Pearl Harbor' deals with a real historical event, I felt very strongly that the movie should deal with the events in a trustworthy way for everybody," says Ben Affleck, who stars in the soon-to-be-released Hollywood movie, "Pearl Harbor," directed by Michael Bay and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer.

The 29-year-old actor gave the impression that it was an honor - as well as hard work - to play a lead role in what will go down as the most expensive movie ever made.

On May 20, at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel in Honolulu, Hawaii, Affleck was the only one of the "Pearl Actor" cast to show up at a pre-opening press interview.

"The only thing I could do, to get closer to the truth, was to study. I took part in actual combat training in an army guerrilla unit. Also, I read over the history of the bombing at Pearl Harbor once again from the very start."

Affleck also showed an impressive enthusiasm for meeting in person World War II historians, people related to the military and veterans who were present when Pearl Harbor was attacked.

Affleck said he was wary of signing up to appear in the movie until being assured that it was not just a vehicle for patriotic zeal. He said, "At first, when I was offered the role, I was suspicious that the movie would not live up to the material, that it would just function to stir patriotism. If that had been so, I would have said no, no matter how big-budget it was. But after I read the script, I was pleasantly surprised - the script was actually quite challenging." Affleck emphasizes the movie's historical objectivity, saying that the film approaches the subject from various perspectives - while it acknowledges the brutality of the strike, it also attempts to illustrate the reasons why Japan launched its attack.

Affleck, who has been acting since early childhood, first got noticed in "Chasing Amy" (1997), directed by Kevin Smith, as a cartoonist who falls in love with a lesbian. Later, he gained further recognition with roles in "Armageddon" (1998) and "Shakespeare in Love" (1998).

Affleck has also dabbled in other parts of filmmaking, co-writing the script for "Good Will Hunting" with Matt Damon in 1998. That film won the Best Original Screenplay Academy Award. He is known for contributing creative ideas to movies in production - and also for playing jokes on his fellow actors.

At the end of the interview, Affleck added, grinning sheepishly, "No matter how well we tried to make the movie, the most important thing is what the audience thinks. People keep telling me how nervous I look these days. Well, I don't think I'll relax until the movie gets released."

by Shin Yong-ho

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