Matt Damon then and now has received 3 nominations for an Oscar three times in the acting category with Good Will Hunting, Invictus, and The Martian. However, it was the role of the super spy in the Bourne series that made him a superstar in Hollywood.

Collecting $60 million within 3 days of the weekend, super-spy Jason Bourne surpassed his predecessor The Bourne Legacy up to $22 million. Jason Bourne was also the third best-selling live-action movie of summer 2016, behind Captain America: Civil War and X-Men: Apocalypse.

The work of director Paul Greengrass satisfied fans and received positive reviews from many critics. The spy Jason Bourne performed by Matt Damon was still a magnet to attract the audience despite being absent for 9 years (he did not appear in The Bourne Legacy in 2012). In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Matt Damon also left open the possibility of making a sequel if he could collaborate with renowned director Paul Greengrass.

Matt Damon Then and Now: Ups and Downs of a 14-year Journey with Spy Jason Bourne

It could be seen that 14 years was not too short for Matt Damon to show his passion to be a spy. Throughout the journey, changing of Matt Damon had made the difference of Jason Bourne through each episode. Let’s see his journey then and now below!


In the early 2000s, Matt Damon accepted to join The Bourne Identity (2002) after a few unsuccessful films. The actor once confessed that his entire career at the time based on The Bourne Identity.

Matt Damon Then and Now: Ups and Downs of a 14-year Journey with Spy Jason Bourne

At first, actor Brad Pitt was targeted for the role, but he was busy with another project. Matt Damon could take this role because he fitted the vision of film director Doug Liman. Accordingly, Liman wanted to find an actor with special personalities. He needed an actor who could perform cruel actions but the audience still felt that was a good character.

Regarding Matt Damon, Jason Bourne was a perfect role for him because it was the combination of his two qualities: the tough appearance of a warrior and the intellectual mind of an artist who used to study at Harvard University.

Matt Damon Then and Now: Ups and Downs of a 14-year Journey with Spy Jason Bourne

Before, Matt Damon had never played a role that required physical strength like Bourne. So he had to practice hard to be able to do action scenes by himself. Together with expert Nick Powell, the actor had practiced boxing, Eskrima, and how to use weapons for 3 months.

Matt Damon didn’t need a stuntman in the warrior and climbing scenes. The first film about Bourne was a big success with 3.5 times higher than the budget and confirmed the name of Matt Damon.

Matt Damon Then and Now: Ups and Downs of a 14-year Journey with Spy Jason Bourne

Following the success of The Bourne Identity, Matt Damon returned to The Bourne Supremacy (2004), collaborating with director Paul Greengrass, who would later become his best friend. This episode marked the death of Marie (Franka Potente), the only lover of Bourne on the screen.

Matt Damon Then and Now: Ups and Downs of a 14-year Journey with Spy Jason Bourne

Two weeks before the movie premiered, director Greengrass phoned Matt Damon and proposed a new ending. Damon agreed to leave the movie studio Ocean’s 12 to return to Bourne. Finally, the new ending was more appreciated than the old one.

Matt Damon once commented that when comparing to agent 007, Bourne was more familiar with the audience. Bond was a man in the 1960s, both murdering and joking. Bourne, in contrast, was a modern figure who fought against government misconduct instead of working for them. He also did not find another woman after the death of his lover.

The Bourne Ultimatum (2007) was one of the most successful in the series up to now. The work won three Oscars in the category of Editing, Harmony, and Sound Editing. Matt Damon joined the film shortly after his wife gave birth to their first daughter.

Matt’s acting reached maturity in The Bourne Ultimatum. The end of The Bourne Ultimatum was when Bourne exposed shady organizations of the government and returned to his seclusion life.

Nine years after The Bourne Ultimatum, Matt returned to his iconic character in Jason Bourne (2016). The 45-year-old actor had more wrinkles on his face, more thoughtful eyes. But his body was still strong, and the actions were still very assertive.

Damon’s acting was once again praised by critics. After 9 years with many ups and downs, he has shown significant progress in his inner acting skills. He could depict the image of a miserable character who no longer believed in anyone.

Related: Emma Watson Then and Now: How She Has Grown up on the Screen


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