One of Ben Affleck’s earliest film roles was playing bully O’Bannion in Richard Linklater’s 1993 comedy “Dazed and Confused”.
The actor discusses his experience making the film in the new book Alright, Alright, Alright: The Oral History of Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused.
During the shoot — in Austin, Texas — the young cast smoked marijuana during their recreational time. Affleck, however, didn’t actually imbibe, but admitted he would “fake it.”
According to Affleck, he “had a bad experience with marijuana at 15. I had a dissociative panic attack.”
As a result, he added, “I only smoked weed if everyone else was smoking and I had to sort of Bill Clinton it and fake it. I didn’t really like marijuana.”
While Affleck subsequently suffered issues with alcohol addiction, he “wasn’t a very heavy drinker then. I became an alcoholic much much later and I’m in recovery now, so that was a whole different time.”
Part of the reason for that was, at age 19, he didn’t want to mess up his first major acting role, admitting he was “a little nervous, like should we be drinking before we’re working tomorrow? Some people were actually drinking and stoned at work.”
In addition to smoking weed, the “Dazed and Confused” cast also enjoyed heading to the firing range.
“Texas had extremely lax gun laws and most of us came from states where it was next to impossible to buy guns,” Affleck revealed.
“Part of the newfound freedom being down there was a bunch of us bought guns and went shooting at ranges on weekends, which seemed fun and innocent at the time, but given the subsequent tragedies with young people and guns, it makes me uncomfortable to remember,” he added.
Alright, Alright, Alright: The Oral History of Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused is on sale now.