Matt Damon And Casey Affleck Set To Star In Apple’s ’The Instigators’

EXCLUSIVE: After planning plenty of robberies in the Ocean’s Eleven movies, Matt Damon and Casey Affleck are ready to plan another heist as two thieves in The Instigators for Apple Original Films. Apple recently landed the coveted package, which has Doug Liman on board to direct.

Damon and Ben Affleck are producing through their newly announced banner Artists Equity, along with Jeff Robinov and John Graham through Studio 8 and Kevin Walsh through his The Walsh Company.

The film follows two thieves who must go on the run with the help of one of their therapists after a robbery goes awry. The script was penned by Chuck MacLean and was developed by Robinov, Graham and Casey Affleck. 

The project joins the slate behind Ben Affleck and Damon’s newly formed studio Artists Equity, which partners with filmmakers to empower creative vision and broaden access to profit participation. The first project announced as part of Artists Equity’s slate was Ben Affleck’s untitled drama that tells the true story behind the creation of the iconic Air Jordan brand, which he is directing with Damon starring. That film is in post-production and is already drawing buzz as one of 2023’s anticipated films.

From left: Cole Hauser, Casey Affleck, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck in ‘Good Will Hunting’, 1997 (Everett)

Damon and the Afflecks’ long-standing relationship began with the Oscar-winning drama Good Will Hunting, which starred the three of them and won Damon and Ben Affleck an Oscar for Best Original screenplay. Since that film, they have worked with one another on a number of occasions that included Damon and Casey appearing in three Ocean’s Eleven films and Ben most recently directing Damon in the untitled Jordan-Nike drama. Damon also produced Manchester by the Sea, which won Casey the Oscar for Best Actor.

As for Walsh, the Manchester by the Sea Oscar nominee recently signed a multi-year deal with Apple TV+ to produce film and television for the streamer, including Ridley Scott’s epic Napoleon starring Joaquin Phoenix.

The Instigators also marks a reunion for Damon and Liman, who helped launched the Jason Bourne series with The Bourne Identity in 2002 with Damon starring and Liman directing.

Damon and the Afflecks are represented by WME and Ziffren Brittenham LLP. Liman is repped by CAA. Walsh is represented by Gregory Slewett at Johnson Shapiro Slewett & Kole. MacLean is repped by Grandview and Hansen Jacobson.

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