Matt Damon and his Mysterious ‘True Grit’ Ab Double

Wednesday, 05 January 2011 14:51 Written by  Jordan DeSaulnier
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Matt Damon and his Mysterious ‘True Grit’ Ab Double

Eagle eyed viewers who hung out through the credits of the Coen Bros’ True Grit adaptation may have noticed a conspicuous credit for “Mr. Damon’s Ab Double”.  I’m sure everybody’s familiar with the practice, where high-profile actors and actresses maintain their image and put their best foot forward by, you know, using someone else’s foot.

This seems like a devastating blow to enthusiasts of both Matt Damon and his abs, but there’s no need to go crying into your cereal just yet.  If you haven’t seen the movie, you should definitely go do that (it’s awesome), and by the end you’ll notice that Damon’s character La Beouf is, in fact, never topless. So what gives? 

Well, we’re dealing with Joel and Ethan Coen here; these guys have a history of this sort of thing.  In the credits of Fargo, Prince – who at that time was identified by a not-at-all-crazy-or-stupid symbol and referred to as The Artist Formerly Known As Prince – was credited as “Victim in Field”.  Unsurprisingly, it wasn’t Prince, but was instead a lowly storyboard artist.  They’ve also had a completely fictitious editor, Roderick Jaynes, on all their films, which they edit themselves.

Anyways, the name of this mysterious Ab Double provides a pretty obvious clue that this credit was the Brothers Coen up to minor mischief: Buster Coen.  Scott Weinberg, of the appropriately titled scottweinberg.com, had the chance to ask Damon himself at a Q & A.  According to Will Hunting himself, it seems Buster is the fifteen year-old son of Ethan Coen, and he worked on True Grit as an assistant to the Script Supervisor.  After expressing his dissatisfaction with his credit, Ethan Coen axed what he’d prefer.  Being a fifteen year-old boy, Buster requested the Ab Double designation.  Being a pretty kick-ass dad, Ethan obliged.

Just imagine: without the internet, we would all be doomed to take the credit at face value and think less of Matt Damon and his abdominal muscles.

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