It’s officially duty-swap time in the Affleck-Garner household. As mom Jennifer Garner gets back into filmmaking this summer with a full plate of work, her Oscar-winning husband will hold down the fort at home as Mr. Mom.
After conquering Hollywood last year with his Academy Award-winning movie, Argo, the multi-talented Affleck, 40, is taking a step back from his own work to focus a bit more on the family life.
“Jennifer is going to work,” a chuckling Affleck, 40, told PEOPLE Monday night. “And she told me to go to the gym.”
That reference is aimed directly at Affleck’s post-Oscar ice-cream diet that he has enjoyed in his down time after awards season. Affleck will now need his stamina to supervise his brood, including daughters Violet, 7, and Seraphina, 4, and infant son, Samuel, 1.
“I’m preparing myself to take on some more of the burden [at home],” Affleck said at the Los Angeles premiere of To The Wonder. “[Jennifer's] got a couple of movies coming up, so it’s going to be a little Mr. Mom action, and I’m going to get back in the ring and we’re going to see if I still have it.”
Garner, who turns 41 April 17, stars next in the film Dallas Buyers Club with Matthew McConaughey, and will also begin work alongside Kevin Costner in the new film Draft Day about NFL football.
Jennifer Garner is on tenterhooks. She is sure she can hear rustling in the bushes around where we are sitting in the back garden of a house overlooking the Malibu coastline.
She stops talking mid-sentence and sits alert, like a startled animal ready to flee.
‘I thought I heard a paparazzi lens,’ she says, eyes scanning the thick shrubbery around the house (it’s rented for the photo-shoot).
Garner, 40, who stars in the new film The Odd Life of Timothy Green – a fantasy drama about a couple who long for a child and suddenly find themselves the parents of a magical boy – shrugs and starts talking again.
The big smile Jennifer Garner had on her face during husband Ben Affleck’s Oscar acceptance speech was genuine — even though he called their marriage “work.” The Dallas Buyers Club actress, 40, explained to British paper The Telegraph that she took no offense to her husband’s off-the-cuff speech.
“I want to thank you for working on our marriage for 10 Christmases. It’s good,” Affleck, 40, said while accepting the Best Picture award for Argo. “It is work but the best kind of work and there’s no one I’d rather work with.”
Garner told The Telegraph that she knew that some misinterpreted Affleck’s comments as a sign of marital trouble. “I had a friend call and say, ‘Are you OK?’” she revealed. “I know Ben, I knew he meant it as the hugest, warmest compliment in the world,” Garner explained. “I think he was saying, ‘Look, what we have is really real and I value it above all and I’m in it with you and I know you are in it with me.’ That’s the way I took it.’”
Knowing his speech caused a little controversy, Affleck later tried to clarify his comments. “All marriages, all relationships to a certain extent, require your work. They require work and investment,” he told Access Hollywood.
But Garner says she didn’t need him to clarify it to her. “Poor guy,” she said. “It’s so horrible to put yourself out there — he didn’t have to worry about it from my point of view.”
The couple are parents to daughters Violet, 7, Seraphina, 4, and Samuel, 13 months. Garner admitted that her career has taken a back seat to her husband’s, but that’s the way she likes it.
“I definitely work less because Ben is so busy but we have three kids, that’s just part of the deal,” she said. “I want to be a mom. I’m happy for him that he’s as energized about work right now as he is. He should be out there doing it. That’s just what makes sense for our family.”
When it comes to skincare, who better to trust than Jennifer Garner? At 40, she’s a safe sun fanatic, and it shows: her skin is amazing.
“The more that I’ve worked with Neutrogena, the more I’ve learned about skin cancer,” the brand’s ambassador told PEOPLE at Wednesday’s Neutrogena Sun Summit. “It’s our most common… and most preventable form of cancer.”
Garner admits that in the past, she wasn’t as cautious about it. “When I was really young, no one thought of the sun as being a problem,” Garner says. “We would put on baby oil and lay in the sun to try to get brown.”
As it turns out, however, being a theater kid “saved” her complexion. While her friends spent afternoons tanning, “I was inside in the theater geeking out. My friends called me Casper!”
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These days, Garner’s daily makeup routine isn’t complete without SPF. “Right after brushing my teeth and washing my face, I put on sunscreen immediately,” she says. “It has to be in my moisturizer, in my makeup.”
And speaking of her beauty regimen, she shares that she’s happy to have a break from super-glam awards season. Though she says she loved having “such great reasons to get dressed up” (see: husband Ben Affleck’s Oscar win), the late nights out took a toll on her skin.
“There would be nights where we would get home so late for me, like 3:30, 4 in the morning,” she says, “When you’ve been wearing that much makeup for that long, you absolutely have to get it off your skin. There were a couple of nights where I used the Neutrogena makeup remover wipes … Worst case scenario, that’s the way to go!”
Now that it’s all over, Garner has happily returned to her low-maintenance look. “I had a blast,” she says, “but I was certainly fine with just going back to washing my face, a little sunscreen in my moisturizer and putting my hair in a ponytail.”
He kept his arm tenderly around her back. She beamed as he told her “I love you” from the stage, and when the show was over, gently reminded him to take his jacket. For Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner, the British Academy Film Awards in London on Feb. 10 was another successful date night – and a rare grown-ups’ weekend getaway, with their three kids staying home with Garner’s sister.
Well, almost: “He’s just like a child!” Garner lovingly joked to a friend as she tugged her still-schmoozing husband–who won the night’s two biggest honors for his film Argo – toward the exit. Could an Oscar for Best Picture be his next stop? “This is a second act for me,” he said in his London acceptance speech. “I am so grateful and proud.” As he told PEOPLE recently, “I am very lucky. I have to knock on wood about my life.”
Especially about the woman who’s a lock for Best Supporting Spouse. After seven years of marriage and three kids–Violet, 7, Seraphina, 4, and Samuel, who turns 1 on Feb. 27–Affleck and Garner, both 40, seem to have struck that rarest of things for a Hollywood couple: balance. It’s an old-fashioned arrangement, with Garner handling most of the day-to-day responsibility for keeping the children’s schedules humming while Affleck rides his Argo hot streak – including Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe wins, despite a snub for the Oscar directing category.
“I’ve got a great family; I’m really inspired by where my career is,” Affleck says. “I’ve seen a lot of different things rambling around in this business, and I’m just really, really happy to find myself where I am.”
Several sources who know the couple well say that both stars are at ease in their “quite traditional roles,” as a Garner friend puts it. Garner dialed back on her own career to commit herself to making the ballet-karate-playdate rounds.
“She blows my mind,” says Affleck’s Argo costar Clea Duvall. “She’s such an amazing mom and such an amazing wife and so supportive of him. It’s just . . . they’re kind of the ideal.” Although Affleck has made his share of school runs during a busy awards season, in many ways he’s an old-fashioned dad.
Says a source who knows the couple: “Have you ever seen Mad Men? That’s how he approaches [marriage and kids] – providing for your family is your priority, and raising the kids day-to-day is the wife’s priority.” But when he’s not working, he’s plenty hands-on, reading to the girls at bookstores and taking them to the farmers’ market. “His wife and family are the best things that ever happened to him,” says an Affleck pal. “They have always come first and always will.”
During his acceptance speech at the Artios Awards in Los Angeles Monday, Oct. 29, the Argo actor/director revealed he felt obligated to pass on the opportunity to direct episodes of Showtime’s hit Homeland — because of an agreement with wife Jennifer Garner.
“It’s true! I was going to do Homeland,” he explained, after the show’s casting director, Libby Goldstein, jokingly called him (and Garner) out during her remarks. (“She had gotten a film/With some sort of thing/And she wanted him home/Well, she does have the ring!” Goldstein rhymed during her speech).
“I liked the show. I signed on. The guys were ready. I don’t want to blame it on ‘her,’ but my wife and I have an arrangement where when she works, I don’t work and when I work, she doesn’t work,” Affleck shared. “She said, ‘I have this movie, it’s 10 weeks, it’s in Atlanta.’ I said, ‘Okay, forget it. I’m sure nothing will happen with it anyway.’”
Affleck was wrong about how Homeland would hold up, though — and he’s more than a little bitter about it.
“Let me tell you something: I hate that f—ing show,” he joked of the series, which recently swept the Emmys with awards for Best Drama, Best Actor (Damian Lewis), Actress (Claire Danes) and more. “I’ve never seen a frame of it and I hate it.”
Though his agreement with Garner, also 40, kept him from getting in on Homeland’s ground floor, Affleck wrapped up his speech with some kind words for his significant other.
“I want to thank my wife who is spectacular and who puts up with me and is a doll, who is the reason I didn’t do Homeland,” he told the crowd. “But she is also the reason why my children [Violet, 6, Seraphina, 3, and Samuel, 8 months] know my name!”
Already father to three adorable children, Ben Affleck is eager to continue procreating with his wife of seven years, Jennifer Garner.
Unfortunately, the Butter actress, 40, says her childbearing days are over. “I am not pregnant right now,” Garner told Ellen DeGeneres on the comedienne’s eponymous talk show (airing September 27). “I plan to be done. But my husband is kind of a wonder sperm kind of guy.”
“Good to know,” DeGeneres, 54, laughed.
“You never don’t know,” Garner responded. “You just have a look at him!”
Her husband’s virility aside, Garner admitted that looking after three children is proving to be a challenge. (She and Affleck, 40, are parents to daughters Violet, 6, and Seraphina, 3, and son Samuel, 7 months.)
“I mean, they didn’t pee in my eye. I don’t know if it’s because he’s a boy. I don’t know if it’s because he’s my third and I forget that I have him,” the West Virginia-born actress admitted. “You know you’re just dealing with two and then you think, ‘I put a baby down. I swear I put a baby down somewhere.’ And you kind of walk through the house. ‘There you are!’ He’s just happy as can be.”
Garner added that Samuel “is so chill and mellow. . . He’s perfect right now because he doesn’t move. But he sleeps pretty well. He reaches when he sees me and he laughs a lot. He thinks I’m super funny. What more do you want?”
While showing off her sexy post-baby body at the premiere of her new film, The Odd Life of Timothy Green, in Hollywood on Monday, Jennifer Garner opened up about the possibility of having more children.
Garner, 40, and husband Ben Affleck, 39, welcomed their third child together, son Samuel, in February (joining daughters Violet, 6, and Seraphina, 3), and they’re adjusting to being parents of three.
“It’s absolute chaos!” the actress told Extra. “I really did not realize how much more work three was going to be than two.”
While Garner was filming her new Walt Disney Pictures film, she says her husband took over caring for the kids.
“The fact that Ben wants another is true . . . ” Garner revealed. But that doesn’t mean she wants to have another baby. “I can tell you that would be a pretty uphill battle with me,” the busy mom said. “I am not anticipating having any more kids!”
Early in July, Us Weekly exclusively reported that the couple was debating having baby No. 4. Jen is happy with three now that she has a boy,” a Garner pal told Us. “Ben wants four.”
Affleck and Garner celebrated their seventh anniversary on June 29 and a source told Us “the marriage is rock solid.”
The Odd Life Of Timothy Green premiere will be taking place on August 7th, Tuesday, in Los Angeles at the El Capitan Theater in Los Angeles. Jen is slated to attend so be sure to check back for coverage from the event!
Instead of wishing his wife, Jennifer Garner, a happy Mother’s Day on a piece of paper, Ben Affleck took his message to his Facebook page. (And yes, there’s a shout-out to his mom, too.)
“I want to say Happy Mother’s Day to the moms in my life: my mom Chris and my amazing wife Jennifer, who is an incredible, spectacular, world-class mom,” he says in a video, which advocates for those raising children in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, another display of his ardent activism for the African country.
Being a mother is “the hardest job that there is, every single day,” Affleck, 39, adds, also giving a nod to the women he met in the Congo. (He founded the Eastern Congo Initiative nonprofit in 2010.)
And that’s more than a 9-5 job for Garner: In February, the couple welcomed a son, Samuel, who joined big sisters Seraphina, 3, and Violet, 6.