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Bennifer is back. Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck‘s photos through the years show that the love was never lost between these two exes.
J-Lo and Ben met in 2001 on the set of their movie, Gigli, in which they played love interests. They started dating in 2002, around the time Ben also starred as the love interest in the music video for J-Lo’s song, “Jenny From the Block.” In November 2002, Ben proposed to J-Lo with a 6.1-carat pink diamond ring from Harry Winston, and the two got engaged. Two days before they were scheduled to tie the knot in September 2003, J-Lo and Ben announced that they had postponed their wedding.
“Due to the excessive media attention surrounding our wedding, we have decided to postpone the date. When we found ourselves seriously contemplating hiring three separate ‘decoy brides’ at three different locations, we realized that something was awry. We began to feel that the spirit of what should have been the happiest day of our lives could be compromised. We felt what should have been a joyful and sacred day could be spoiled for us, our families and our friends,” they said in a statement at the time.
In January 2004, J-Lo and Ben announced that they had ended their engagement after two years together. “I am confirming the report that Jennifer Lopez has ended her engagement to Ben Affleck,” J-Lo’s rep said in a statement at the time. “At this difficult time, we ask that you respect her privacy.” Fast forward to April 2021, and news breaks that J-Lo and Ben had reunited weeks after her split from her then-fiance, Alex Rodriguez. A source told Page Six at the time that J-Lo and Ben broke up in 2004 because they were in different places in their life, but were committed to making their relationship work a second time around.
“As hot and heavy as their relationship was, they were on very different paths at the end of it,” the insider said. “Jennifer was ready to settle down and have kids, but Ben wasn’t keen on giving up his bachelor lifestyle just yet. In the end, she got tired of waiting for him to come around — even though it broke her heart to end things.” The source continued, “Jennifer always saw Ben as the one that got away. She was crushed after they broke up, though she felt at the time that she had no other choice but to call off their engagement.”
Read on for Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck‘s photos through the years, including the first red carpet they walked together since their 2004 breakup.
September 2021: Venice Film Festival
J-Lo and Ben walked their first red carpet together since their 2004 breakup at the 2021 Venice Film Festival on September 10, 2021. The red carpet was for the premiere of Ben’s movie, The Last Duel, in which he plays Count Pierre d’Alençon, a European count in the 14th century. For the premiere, J-Lo wore a long, white Georges Hobeika gown, while Ben dressed in a classic black tuxedo.
July 2003: Gigli Premiere
Before the 2021 Venice Film Festival, the last red carpet J-Lo and Ben walked together was at the premiere of their 2003 movie, Gigli, in which they played love interests. The movie—which is often considered one of the worst films of all time and one of the most expensive box office bombs in Hollywood history—was released five months before J-Lo and Ben announced that they had ended their engagement.
March 2003: Oscars
J-Lo and Ben walked the red carpet together at the 2003 Oscars, where Ben presented the award for Best Original Screenplay, a category he won in 1997 for Good Will Hunting alongside Matt Damon.
February 2003: Daredevil Premiere
J-Lo and Ben walked the premiere his Marvel Comics movie, Daredevil, in 2003. The movie—in which Ben plays Matt Murdock, a blind lawyer who fights crime as the masked vigilante Daredevil—also stars Jennifer Garner, Ben’s ex-wife whom he married after his breakup with J-Lo. Ben and Jennifer Garner married in 2005 and divorced in 2018. They share three kids together: Violet, Seraphina and Samuel.
December 2002: Maid in Manhattan Premiere
One month after their engagement in November 2002, Ben and J-Lo walked the red carpet together at her movie, Maid in Manhattan, in which J-Lo plays Marisa Ventura, a maid at a hotel who falls in love with a guest.
For more about J-Lo’s life, check out True Love by Jennifer Lopez. The 2014 memoir covers the “Jenny on the Block” singer’s career and personal life, from her start as a dancer to when she became a mom of two twins with her now-ex-husband Marc Anthony. In the book, which includes more than 200 personal photographs from J-Lo’s never-before-seen collection, the Selena actress writes about how “she confronted her greatest challenges, identified her biggest fears, and ultimately emerged a stronger person than she’s ever been” to become the pop icon we know today.
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