Readers, let us return to the halcyon days of 2002. Everyone flocked to theaters to see Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, doubled-up polos were the height of fashion, and Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez were the hottest celebrity couple out there. While Bennifer ran its course by 2004 with a broken engagement, fans of celebrity gossip have held out hope that the couple would reunite someday.
When Lopez called off her engagement with Alex Rodriguez due to "broken trust," fans immediately began speculating that she and Affleck, who recently broke up with Ana de Armas, should find their way back to each other. It's safe to say that when the former couple was seen out and about on Friday the rumor mill began churning in earnest. However, an insider is setting the record straight, telling Entertainment Tonight are keeping things platonic.
"[They] are friends and have a cordial, good relationship," the source said. "They obviously have a romantic history, but at this point they only have a friendship. They both admire each other professionally, respect one another and feel comfortable with each other." A second source echoed this assurance of friendship. "Jennifer and Ben have seen each other a few times since her breakup with Alex," they told Entertainment Tonight. "Jen and Ben have remained friends over the years and the two are still just that - friends."
The former couple has spoken about each other periodically over the years, with Affleck talking about Lopez as recently as April. "I don't know whether people know it or not, but the most impressive thing about her (and that is a long list) was her extraordinary work ethic," he told InStyle. "She had this humility coupled with the basic assumption that not only did you have to work incredibly hard to succeed, you had to then push yourself even further." He also praised Lopez's ageless beauty. "Where are you keeping the fountain of youth? Why do you look the same as you did in 2003 and it kind of looks like I'm in my 40s…at best?"
Lopez received the compliment gracefully, quipping "Ben is funny! He still looks pretty good too." In her 2014 memoir True Love, Lopez called Affleck "her first real heartbreak." "It felt like my heart had been torn out of my chest," she wrote. "People do lots of things to anesthetize themselves in moments like these. Some people do drugs, some drink and some go out and party."