Argo took home best picture at the Academy Awards this evening, topping off an incredible award season for the film. Ben Affleck, George Clooney, and Grant Heslov stepped back to the press room after accepting their honors. Ben took the lead on the fun conversation, which of course included jokes — some of which got a little dirty! Here are highlights:
On the feeling Argo was going to be something special: "I was excited about making the movie. These guys had a script. I really liked it. I called them up. I wanted to make the movie and I wanted to make it with them. I wanted to make something quality. I didn't take a more meta approach than that. I was excited to make it and work with these guys and let the chips fall where they may as long as we made something we were proud of."
On the moment they thought Argo had a good chance of winning: "When they gave us the trophies, I was confident we would win. I don't get into too much of the Oscar-ology and pontificating — which is great and people like it. I hope people are interested in the Oscars, because it helps our industry and makes people make better films, but I don't read it."
On Michelle Obama announcing Argo's win: "I was sort of hallucinating when that was happening. In the course of a hallucination it doesn't seem that odd. It just seems natural since the whole thing is unnatural. I was just asking these two guys outside, was that Michelle Obama? In retrospect the fact that it was the first lady was a huge honor and that she was surrounded by service people felt appropriate. It was very cool."
On the best director snub, now that Argo won: "Naturally I was disappointed. When I look at the directors, people who weren't nominated as well — Kathryn Bigelow, Quentin Tarantino, Tom Hooper — it's just amazing. These are all directors who I admire tremendously. It was a good year. You know what, you're not entitled to anything, I am honored to be here. I'm honored to be with these guys. I'm really, really honored to win an Academy Award."