Matt Damon’s Request Was Downright Rejected By Both Steven Spielberg And Clint Eastwood For A Very Similar Reason


The world of Hollywood is a glamorous one, filled with bright lights, red carpets, and seemingly limitless creative freedom for its biggest stars.

But, even the top superstars don’t always get their way. In a surprising turn of events, Matt Damon, a household name with an enviable career, has revealed that legendary directors Steven Spielberg and Clint Eastwood both shut down the same request from him – and for a very good reason.

Steven Spielberg Rejected Matt Damon’s Scene Retake in Saving Private Ryan

While working with Steven Spielberg on the war epic Saving Private Ryan (1998), Matt Damon felt a particular scene needed another take.

However, Spielberg, known for being efficient, politely but firmly disagreed with Damon. Speaking to Off Camera, the Hollywood star recalled:

“I remember when I was doing Saving Private Ryan there was a scene with a couple of guys, and Spielberg moved on. He [Spielberg] was marching off… and I said, ‘Steven don’t you think we should have done a couple more takes of that thing?’ because it hadn’t been great. He turned on a dime and said, ‘I can spend about an hour on that scene and make it 10% better, or I can do another great shot. I’m gonna do the shot.’”

Interestingly, something similar happened to the 53-year-old over ten years later. This time, it was Clint Eastwood (who is even more adamant about avoiding unnecessary retakes), who conveyed a similar message.


Clint Eastwood Also Declined Matt Damon’s Request Because of His One-Take Rule

During the filming of Invictus in 2009, where Matt Damon portrayed a South African rugby coach, Clint Eastwood decided that a scene was done after only one take. The Boston native recounted in a chat with Sean Evans on Hot Ones:

“[Making Invictus] was a little terrifying because I was playing a South African in Invictus and that’s a really hard accent to do… On day one of shooting we did the first take, it went pretty well. Clint says, ‘Cut, print, check the gate,’ which means, ‘We’re done here. Let’s move on. ‘Boss, do you think maybe we can get one more?’ [Eastwood] just turns, and he goes, ‘Why? Do you want to waste everybody’s time?’ I was like, ‘OK, we’re done! Let’s move on.’”

Eastwood believes in getting authentic performances in just a few takes, and this approach has earned him a lot of praise from critics. While actors naturally strive for perfection, Damon’s experience with Spielberg and Eastwood shows it’s important to trust the director’s plan.

Having been in the industry for a long time, the two directors understand the nuances of filmmaking. They prioritize capturing raw emotions and maintaining momentum over doing too many takes!