Evolution of Jennifer Garner’s Relationships

Scott Foley

Jennifer has always been into commitment, so it’s not a surprise that actor Ben Affleck wasn’t her first husband. In fact, Jennifer Garner was married to her Felicity co-star Scott Foley, and the marriage lasted for almost four years. Jennifer was guest-starring on the show, which Foley was on for years. They wed in October 2000.

Scott Foley

Foley and Garner were married after their Felicity inspired courtship. Foley, who Garner now identifies as one of the good guys, perhaps lacked the edge that Garner’s future husband, Ben Affleck turned Batman, would eventually possess. The two would split.

Divorce From Scott Foley

Looking back, Garner says that she and Foley, who are still on good terms, “didn’t know what hit them”. The two were both fairly new to Hollywood, and lacked experience handling the high-profile, stressful careers that they were slowly, but surely, developing for themselves.

Divorce From Scott Foley

In the spring of 2003, the couple split up. It wasn’t long until their eventual divorce, only a short time after the press picked up on their separation. Today, when asked about her relationship with the Scandal star, Garner blames their divorce on the two just not being compatible. They weren’t the right match, claims Garner, stating that they just “imploded”.

Scott Foley Career Pickup

Garner and Foley had little to no chance for reconciliation after their split, after his acting career picked up significantly. After his hit show Felicity ended, Foley went to appear on hit shows, mostly as romantic interests. His guest star appearances included Scrubs, Dawson’s Creek, House, Cougar Town, and Grey’s Anatomy. He also wrote and directed the 2013 film Let’s Kill Ward’s Wife.

Scott Foley Career Pickup

Foley’s most significant role, however, is his time on Scandal as the Director of the NSA, Captain Jake Ballard. After his first season on Scandal, Foley was promoted to a series regular, due to his status of romantic interest to Kerry Washington’s fearless character, Olivia Pope. Ballard is a fan-favorite, but one fan who’s not #TeamJake?Foley’s second wife, Polish-American actress Marika Dominczyk.

Scott Foley Marriage To Marika Dominczyk

After his divorce from Garner, Foley also moved on romantically, with Let’s Kill Ward’s Wife actress, Marika Dominczyk. Dominczyk and Foley married in the summer of 2007 and went on to have three children together, first their daughter, Malina, followed by their two young sons, Keller and Konrad.

Scott Foley Marriage To Marika Dominczyk

It’s hard to ignore the difference between Marika Dominczyk and Jennifer Garner, having the similar features, distinctive jawline, and flawless reflection. While that could have been the initial attraction to Dominczyk after his divorce from Garner, something has stuck, as the two are still married and seemingly, very happy with each other, and their young, growing family.

Michael Vartan

While Foley moved on with his now wife, Dominczyk, Jennifer Garner was all smiles while enjoying a somewhat short-lived fling with her Alias co-star Michael Vartan. It’s unclear exactly when the two split, but they dated during the time that Jennifer Garner played her most significant role, as fierce CIA officer Sydney Bristow. Garner was on Alias for half a decade, from 2001 to 2006. It was her first big hit.

Michael Vartan

Vartan played Michael Vaughn, and was actually her character, Sidney Bristow’s, on-screen, romantic interest. He was on the show during the span of the entire series, but didn’t starting dating Garner in the public eye until 2003.

Gwyneth Paltrow and Ben Affleck

Though Michael and Jennifer would eventually split, then reunite (whaaaat?!), while they flirted, then ultimately, fizzled out. Jennifer’s future husband Ben Affleck was dating other beautiful celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow. Paltrow and Affleck met on the set of their drama, Bounce, and went on to date for three years.

Gwyneth Paltrow and Ben Affleck

In 2000, Paltrow and Affleck broke up, due to what Gwyneth, in later years, would attribute to age and maturity, as well as commitment levels. Gwyneth, who openly admitted after their split that she was recovering from a previous relationship, cited Ben’s immaturity as a reason for their breakup.

Secret Split From Michael Vartan

Meanwhile, though they made a great couple on television, the undeniable chemistry between characters Michael and Sidney, apparently didn’t translate off the silver screen to Garner and the hunky, yet soft-spoken Vartan. Vartan and Garner only dated for about a year, maybe breaking up in the late summer of 2004. It’s unknown how serious they were.

Secret Split From Michael Vartan

Though the press speculated the actual breakup had occurred months earlier, the two appeared together in public until their publicized, documented split. They continued to be romantic interests on screen, with a dedicated fan-base. Perhaps it was that fan-base that reignited their spark in later years, after the hiatus where Jennifer dated and married her most significant ex, Argo star, Ben Affleck.

Gwyneth Paltrow and Brad Pitt

After Gwyneth Paltrow dated Affleck for three years, Gwyneth rebounded with co-stars Scott Speedman and actor Luke Wilson, before eventually marrying Coldplay lead singer, Chris Martin. Her relationship, or rather, the end of it, with now ex-husband Martin, coined the term “conscious uncoupling”, describing a mutual, yet respectful decision to separate.

Gwyneth Paltrow and Brad Pitt

But one of the biggest reasons Affleck and Paltrow perhaps consciously uncoupled, aside from his immaturity, was her obvious hang up with an ex. Gwyneth’s very first love, who she still grieved for during her long-term relationship with Affleck, was actor Brad Pitt (pre-Angelina). Pitt and Paltrow dated in the mid to late 90s, after starring together in the hit film, Seven. Perhaps this infatuation was why she didn’t invest everything in Affleck, a choice that would eventually lead him to Jennifer Garner.

Jennifer Lopez

While his future partner, Jennifer, dated around and spent time being single, Ben Affleck moved on from his high-profile relationship with Gwyneth Paltrow with an even higher-profile relationship, of course, with songstress Jennifer Lopez. Lopez, who had a laundry list of famous ex-suitors including Wesley Snipes and Diddy, was by far, one of Affleck’s most serious relationships.

Jennifer Lopez

Lopez, who had once married choreographer Cris Judd, was no secret to commitment. Affleck and Lopez became engaged, after he shot the famous butt rubbing scene in her sultry Jenny from the Block music video. It seemed they were headed towards nuptials, until Ben got cold feet, only a few days away from their elaborate and meticulously planned wedding.

Bennifer (Part Deux)

It’s easy to assume that wholesome Jennifer Garner didn’t appreciate her relationship with Ben Affleck being coined initially as Bennifer 2, but she hung in there anyway. Jennifer and Ben first met on the set of the romantic war pic Pearl Harbor in 2001,where Affleck played a dashing solider opposite Josh Hartnett, and Jennifer played a shy, awkward, yet adorable nurse who befriends the main love interest, Kate Beckinsale.

Bennifer (Part Deux)

During their 2003 superhero pic, Daredevil, the two got better acquainted and started dating seriously. Ben played title character Matt Murdock, and of course, Jennifer played his love interest, violent mercenary Elektra Natchios.

The Beginning

Their relationship between Affleck and equally charming Garner hit the paparazzi’s radar in 2004, when they started to attend the World Series games to support Boston-native Ben’s favorite team, the Boston Red Sox. Affleck and Garner were an instant hit with the public, and quickly became America’s new favorite it couple.

The Beginning

Garner’s laid back nature complimented Affleck’s softer side, often hidden in his previous relationships with Paltrow and Lopez. Turned out, Affleck was surprisingly romantic with Garner, courting her with eloquent, well written emails. Thanks to constant visits to each other on film sets, and a natural camraderie with each other, the seriousness of relationship escalated quickly.

The Proposal

Affleck proposed to Garner in April of 2005, perfectly timed with her 33rd birthday. They happily married early that summer on the Turks and Caicos Islands. The small wedding was missing the glitz and glamour planned for typical celebrity weddings (such as his wedding plans with J’Lo) and attended by just the officiator. Victor Garber, who starred in Alias with Garner, wed the pair and was the sole guest.

The Proposal

Garner and Affleck, despite their celebrity, were a notoriously private couple. Quite a contrast from his Bennifer days with Lopez, his relationship with Garner resonated with fans because of how genuine, and authentic their lives seemed to be.

Meet the Afflecks

When the couple married in 2005, Garner was also three months pregnant, expecting their precious daughter, Violet. The Afflecks went on to have two more children, a daughter, Seraphina, in 2008, and in 2011, a son, Samuel. The Afflecks built an impeccable home in Brentwood, and pursued their careers, with Affleck landing more serious roles.

Family Walk

They were presumably, living the dream. Their children were often photographed laughing and smiling, during grocery store visits with their mother. Sometimes, they were pictured at the park with their Mom or trips to the beach with their father, painting them as the perfect, All-American family. Something many fans aspired to have. Their down to earth nature made them relatable.

Picture Perfect?

Though the Afflecks appeared to be in a picture perfect marriage, both in paparazzi photos and in person, behind the scenes, there was trouble. After nearly ten years of marriage, after Ben and Jennifer celebrated their anniversary, and were seemingly forgotten by the press, they popped again with some serious news – they were separating.

Picture Perfect?

Fans were shocked and friends were devastated. Paparazzi sough out long-time family friends such as Matt Damon and his wife, who were close the Affleck family. Their kids played together. There was little to be explained, as it just seemed like the two were taking a mutual break from their near decade-long marriage. Shortly before the split, Affleck even gushed about his wife, “She’s the most beautiful woman out there.”

Behind The Scenes

Even when camera bulbs weren’t flashing, Affleck and Garner seemed like the perfect family. Fans were ecstatic with clips from their day to day lives, such as the shots they took with their cell phones for the Ice Bucket Challenge in 2014. Garner poured water of Affleck’s head, and he playfully pulled her into their family pool.

Behind The Scenes

But news broke in 2016 that Affleck had been unfaithful, causing Jennifer to push for a divorce. Though it has been pure speculation, and was never confirmed, rumors followed Affleck about a possible indiscretion with a once nanny, Christine Ouzounian. In an interview with Vanity Fair, Jen didn’t confirm it, but did say that Affleck cast “quite a shadow”.

Garner’s Independence

When Garner and Affleck split, she took the high road. There was the feature in Vanity Fair, where Garner seemed cool and aloof about her divorce, but very complimentary towards Affleck and the current state of the relationship. “No one needs to hate him for me. I don’t hate him,” she told VF, when asked about Ben.

Garner’s Independence

Since the divorce, Garner has continued to take on work, such as Danny Collins, as well as Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. The films include a surprising choice in Miracles from Heaven. That role, about a Christian mother dealing with the controversy of her ill daughter’s mysterious cure, inspired Jennifer to bring her kids back to church, choosing a Methodist service on Sundays.

Ben’s Singleness

Affleck, who has been playfully teased for his platonic relationship with Matt Damon, was once again, extremely grateful for his friendship. The actor, and Affleck’s best bud, is undeniably, one of the best relationships Ben has ever had. Damon came to Affleck’s defense over and over again during the divorce, insisting that his friend is misunderstood.

Ben’s Singleness

The two have been friends since childhood, growing up together in Cambridge, Massachusetts. That’s one of the reasons that Damon, seemingly with nothing to gain, constantly paints Affleck as an even-tempered, down to earth husband and dedicated father. He’s been quoted talking to The Hollywood Reporter, “There’s nobody who’s more misunderstood,” in reference to Affleck.

Michael Vartan – Friend or More?

Michael Vartan, Garner’s former co-worker and fling from the early 2000s, came back into the picture after Jen and Ben’s split. It’s unclear on whether or not their relationship has, or will become romantic, but the pair has been spotted together multiple times.

Michael Vartan – Friend or More?

It doesn’t hurt that Vartan, who had been married to Lauren Skaar, a woman who he had met years earlier at Whole Foods, had gone through his own divorce. It’s been rumored that Affleck is irritated with the friendship, suspecting that the pair might be more, but Garner, of course, has been very tight-lipped about the affair.

Bennifer, Part Three?

Of course, after Affleck and Garner split, it was only a matter of time until the press linked him to another woman. Besides their family nanny, gossip sites were quick to speculate that Ben had reunited with his most passionate ex… Jennifer Lopez. But what appears could be a Bennifer: Part Three, may instead, just be nasty gossip.

Bennifer, Part Three?

The gossip sites and press, as well as paparazzi, aside from Ben’s possible flings or relationships, have even suggested that Jennifer Garner is pregnant again. It would be the couples fourth time, and a picture perfect reunion to help mend their marriage. But for now, nothing has been confirmed, and the Afflecks certainty aren’t talking.

Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony

But perhaps what will prevent a Bennifer (Part Three) wedding and eventual marriage would be Jennifer Lopez’s continued high-profile romances after she and Ben split the first time. Of course, in addition to their awkward appearances together in their mutual creative projects, failed films such as Gigli and Jersey Girl.

Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony

Lopez, who has since confessed that Affleck was extremely difficult to forget about, went on to have a hot and heavy fling with Dancing with the Stars pro-dancerMaksim Chmerkovski. But first, indulged in a seven year relationship and marriage to Latin singer Marc Anthony. Fans were thrilled. The two had dated previously, and had two beautiful children together, before they eventually divorced in the early summer of 2014. Lopez has been dating backup dancer Casper Smart (who was 24, and undeniably, her junior), since recent reports saying they had split. As for the future of Ben and Jenny from the block, guess we’ll have to wait and see!