Matt Damon

Matt Damon
"It was kind of like putting on an old pair of shoes or something," Damon says of returning to his Jason Bourne role.
WENN/Landov

updated 07/20/2004 at 01:00 PM EDT

originally published 07/23/2004 06:00AM

Unlike his amnesiac assassin character Jason Bourne, Matt Damon isn't quick to forget. After starring in 2002's Bourne Identity, the 33-year-old star brought out his old "bag of tricks" for the sequel, The Bourne Supremacy – talents like being handy with a gun and being a professional stalker. Damon recently shared some of his new skills and talked about what's it's like to run with the "in" crowd – George Clooney and the Ocean's Twelve gang.

You don't really look like a tough guy. Why do you think you were picked for the job?
(Original director Doug Liman) thought that it was really daring to cast me as this guy because of the way that I look. I look so young. ... So, Doug would come up with certain things. He watched boxing on television and he liked the way that boxers walked.

What did you do to mimic that?
I boxed for about six months before the movie and that really did help. ... The sum total of a lot of those little subtleties add up into making something believable or not.

Why is Jason Bourne considered an anti-hero?
If you take responsibility for your own actions, the most important thing that you do to rejoin the human race is to start by atoning for the things that you've done. To take someone who we've established as an American, the ultimate American machine, weapon, whatever, that's the realization that he comes to. In the end, it's very powerful.

Are you and Good Will Hunting pal Ben Affleck working on anything new?
I saw him last night and (writing) is something that we talk about every time we see each other. We want to do it, but it's just a matter of handling the logistics and figuring out a way to get us in the same place at the same time.

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Have you seen the Off-Broadway play Matt & Ben?
I haven't seen it. And I don't know, some people have said it's funny. Some people have said it's kind of a knock or whatever. I just figure it's an extension of Project Greenlight. It's a chance to get people a job. (Laughs)
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