Born in the Cambridge area of Boston, Matt Damon’s parents separated when he was two years old and he and his brother moved to nearby Cambridge. A bright youngster, Matt was a straight A student with a love of baseball.
Choosing his projects wisely, he managed to steer a distinguished career path without opting for high-earning, quick turnaround movies favoured by some. Displaying his sinister side in ‘The Talented Mr Ripley’, alongside Jude Law in 1999, he won a new legion of fans, proving his talents lay above and beyond his clean-cut, boy-next-door looks.
‘Ocean's Eleven’ in 2001 was another monster hit that allowed Damon the creative freedom to work on ventures such as ‘Project Greenlight’, which provided a creative vehicle for new movie-making talent. The television show behind the project was a great success and earned Damon and Affleck an Emmy nomination. The pair continued to work on a number of productions having formed Pearl Street Productions together with Chris Moore in 1998.
It was with ‘The Bourne Identity’ in 2002 that Damon made a return to the big screen – a role that earned him a massive $10 million. The film was a worldwide smash and spawned the sequels ‘The Bourne Supremacy’ and ‘The Bourne Ultimatum’.
‘Ocean’s Twelve’ marked another landmark in the young actor’s career as did ‘The Brothers Grimm’ with Heath Ledger about two con-men who convince villagers they’re being persecuted by evil monsters so they get paid as exorcists.
Despite appearing in a number of movies, many of which were successful, Damon appeared to be unlucky as far as awards were concerned. However, this changed as seven years after being nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor for his role in ‘The Talented Mr. Ripley’ (1999) he was finally recognised, albeit alongside co-stars. This happened when Martin Scorsese’s crime film ‘The Departed’ (2006) got a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination for best cast.
Several movies followed, including ‘Ocean’s Thirteen’ and ‘Youth Without Youth’ in 2007 and ‘Che: Part Two’ in 2008, before Damon flexed his muscles on the critical stage with his next role. Steven Soderbergh’s 2009 biographical comedy thriller ‘The Informant!’ was well received by critics and ended Damon’s award drought. He received several best actor nominations including a Golden Globe, Chicago Film Critics Association Award and a Satellite Award.
Damon followed this success by getting more recognition for his portrayal of former South African rugby captain Francois Pienaar in 2009 hit ‘Invictus’. He got an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor as well as selections for the Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild. 2010 saw him star in war film ‘Green Zone’, then ‘Hereafter’ and ‘True Grit’. In 2011 he appeared in ‘Contagion’ and ‘The Adjustment Bureau’. His latest roles include 'The Monuments Men' (2014) and 'Interstellar' (2014).
On the personal front Damon has dated a number of his co-stars including Winona Ryder and Minnie Driver, whom he famously ditched during an appearance on ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’. However, the eligible former bachelor married interior designer Luciana Barroso in a secret ceremony in New York in December 2005, after they met during the filming of his movie ‘Stuck on You’.
On 11 June 2006, Matt and Luciana's first child together, Isabella, was born in Miami. The couple’s second child, Gia Zavala, joined the family in August 2008 before the brood was expanded with the birth of daughter Stella Zavala in 2010. Luciana has one other child, Alexia, from a previous marriage.