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Ben Affleck Reveals The Trickiest Part Of Filming The Last Duel

Ridley Scott has conquered many genres during his filmmaking career, but he's a master of historical epics. From "The Duellists" to "Gladiator" to "Kingdom of Heaven," Scott has helmed more than a few critically-acclaimed period pieces that chronicle the adventures of formidable warriors doing what they do best — usually with bloody outcomes.

The director's next historical feature is "The Last Duel," which promises to touch on many of these same ideas. Based on real events, the movie tells the story of France's last sanctioned duel, fought by Sir Jean de Carrouges (Matt Damon) and Jacques Le Gris (Adam Driver). The friends become enemies after Marguerite de Carrouges (Jodie Comer) brings criminal allegations against Le Gris following a troubling meeting between the two parties. Accounts of this story have varied over time, but Scott and his team are out to unravel this mystery by recounting these events onscreen.

Understandably, making a movie of this magnitude presented some challenges for the cast crew. During a recent press conference for "The Last Duel," which Looper attended, Ben Affleck, who plays Pierre d'Alençon, opened up about the most difficult part of shooting the 20th Century Studios feature. 

The hardest part of shooting The Last Duel is not what you'd expect

Adapting stories based on true events for the big screen is always tricky, especially when there are multiple viewpoints to include. Co-writers Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, and Nicole Holofcener made sure to include these various perspectives in the script. As a result, some scenes in "The Last Duel" involve exchanges between characters being shown more than once, with the perspective shifting depending on who is recounting a particular set of events. Even though these people are part of the same conversation, they come away with different viewpoints.

Affleck commented that this was the trickiest part of filming "The Last Duel." During the press conference, he explained, "The challenge, really, was — because we didn't want to cheat at all, and have it be, 'Oh, and from my point of view this whole other scene happens' — really to try to create and reflect this phenomenon of the fact that two people can have a conversation, and you can ask each one of them, 'What did you come away with?' and they'll genuinely tell you different things. They'll have different experiences, and those experiences are oftentimes rooted in where they're coming from, what their needs are, what their values are, and so forth."

Damon also touched on this particular filming challenge and revealed how the cast made the varying perspectives clear. According to the actor, "We had written down, on the schedule, whose perspective we were in, always, but we would always say before we rolled, 'This is my perspective,' or 'This is your perspective.' We'd just remind each other because we had to totally calibrate everything based on that."

"The Last Duel" arrives in theaters on October 15.