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Ben Affleck returns to director's chair in new film 'Air'

Yong Chavez | TFC News Hollywood

Posted at Apr 12 2023 11:49 AM | Updated as of Apr 12 2023 12:01 PM

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A decade after winning Oscar Best Picture for "Argo," Ben Affleck returned to his actor-director's chair to tell another story inspired by real events.

He’s the director of “Air” and also plays Phil Knight, Nike’s founder, and the person who green lighted the then-impossible pursuit of creating a sneaker brand tied with basketball legend Michael Jordan.

"I think it parallels the goals that we had in trying to create this movie studio that was going to do things in a slightly different way," Affleck said when asked what compelled him to direct the film.

Affleck added that he wanted to make a movie that "people would love, that was just about human beings talking to each other based on performance and writing and execution of that."

He was referring to Artists' Equity, his newly formed production company with his longtime friend and "Air" lead star Matt Damon.

It aims to give crew and actors ownership stakes that make them significant participants in the outcome of any project they work on.

The more profit the film generates, the higher the cast and crew’s income will be.

This was similar to what was portrayed in “Air” where Jordan and his mother Deloris negotiated a historic deal that allowed the athlete to have a share of Nike's profits for every Air Jordan sneaker sold.

"It has a strong parallel and it’s a lot of themes that are current," Affleck said. "We tried to break rules and do some things a little differently and compensate people more fairly. And we have ambitions, and I hope we are successful, even a tiny bit as much as Nike and Michael Jordan were."