Matt Damon as Daredevil? It could have almost happened.
Speaking to the New York Daily News to promote The Martian, Damon explained that he and friend Ben Affleck loved Daredevil when they were kids. But when plans for a big-screen version of the property started in earnest, Damon balked at the opportunity to play his childhood hero. “I couldn’t tell,” Damon said of the 2003 film, which would eventually star Affleck. “I hadn’t seen the director’s [Mark Steven Johnson] work and I didn’t know. So I just said, ‘No.’ Ben was like, ‘I gotta do it.'”
Daredevil would gross more than $100 million at the box office after its release, but is often cited as a miss, even by Affleck himself.
“Daredevil, I didn’t [like] at all,” he told Details in 2012. “Some movies should have worked and didn’t. At a certain point, it’s just up to the movie gods.”
Speaking to Playboy last year, Affleck said Daredevil was the only movie he regretted. “It just kills me. I love that story, that character, and the fact that it got f—ed up the way it did stays with me. Maybe that’s part of the motivation to do Batman.” (Affleck will star as the Caped Crusader in next year’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.)
As for Damon, while it’s unlikely he’ll actually get to play Daredevil in the near future — Charlie Cox is currently filling the role for Marvel on the Daredevil Netflix series — there is one version of the comic book hero’s story he would love to see: “If Chris Nolan came up to me and said, ‘I want to do Daredevil,’ I would be in,” Damon said.