“I wanted to see you. I wanted fate to take control. I let my heart lead me. You were right. I don’t hate you Skylar, I love you. Would you forgive me? Would you please forgive me? Without you, I don’t feel complete.” Will explained.
“Will, of course I forgive you.” Skylar kissed him again smiling.
“Can I come in?” Will asked. Skylar nodded.
“Come on in!” Skylar pulled away from him and grabbed his hand pulling him into the room. Will turned to close the door, only to find Chuckie Sullivan standing in the door way.
And where did this bit of script come from, you ask? A lost epilogue to the Oscar-winning Good Will Hunting screenplay? A deleted scene? Thankfully, no. The answer is simple: Good Will Hunting fan fiction. It’s out there, believe it or not.
But amateur screenwriters on the internet aren’t the only ones imagining a cinematic reacquaintance with Good Will Hunting‘s Chuckie Sullivan. I’ve been hearing and reading many a comparison between Affleck’s The Town character and his more youthful and naive Good Will Hunting character.
Does The Town‘s Doug MacRay represent Chuckie’s character all grown up?
Well, no. No more so than The Departed is about the corruption of Will Hunting by organized crime or The Bourne Identity is the story of Will working for the NSA after all.
But there are some interesting comparisons.
Global Comment‘s Mark Farnsworth writes:
MacRay could be Affleck’s Chuckie left behind by Will in Good Will Hunting, and in places The Town plays like an unofficial sequel about Chuckie’s life story. In that movie Chuckie berates Will for not taking his chance, “Fuck you, you don’t owe it to yourself man, you owe it to me. Cuz tomorrow I’m gonna wake up and I’ll be 50, and I’ll be doin’ this shit. And that’s all right. That’s fine. But you’re sittin’ on a winnin’ lottery ticket. And you’re too much of a pussy to cash it in, and that’s bullshit. Cause I’d do fuckin’ anything to have what you got. So would any of these fuckin’ guys. It’d be an insult to us if you’re still here in 20 years. Hangin’ around here is a waste of your time.”
So yes, the similarity between the scenes in which Affleck’s character argues for Will Hunting to leave Boston behind and in which he argues that he himself must leave Boston in The Town have obvious similarities. Affleck himself has said as much in an interview with AFP, recalling the Good Will Hunting “lottery ticket” speech, “I found myself back in the same scene.”
The AFP article continues:
In The Town, Affleck as the leader of a posse of bank robbers has a scene with Jeremy Renner, who plays his surrogate brother, which Affleck said was “heartbreaking in a different way and probably a more common way.”
It was “one guy saying, ‘I have to leave, I have to change, I have to do something different,’ and the other saying, ‘Stay with me, don’t leave me, don’t do that to me,’ and how hard it makes it to make that choice when you have your best friend, your brother … sitting there (saying): ‘I need you, don’t leave me.'”
Both scenes “spoke to that dynamic,” Affleck commented. “And in a larger sense they spoke to the importance of male friendships.”
Farnsworth’s Globe Comment analysis doesn’t end on a simple comparison between the two scenes, though. He goes on to describe the getting-out-of-town conceit as representative of not only Damon and Affleck’s respective characters, but their careers as well:
Chuckie’s words resonate loudly when applied to MacRay but they scream from the top of the Bunker Hill Monument in Affleck’s case. Whereas his boyhood pal Matt Damon has seen his career progress smoothly into iconic status with the Bourne films, Affleck has had to rebuild his after the whole “Bennifer” fiasco.
So is The Town Ben’s ticket out of the mediocre-film-career doldrums? (His “winnin’ lottery ticket”?)
And what other similarities between the films have you noticed? (Spoilers welcome.)