The little-known meaning behind Ben Affleck’s unique middle name

Do you know the interesting story behind Ben Affleck’s unique middle name? The actor has grabbed more headlines for revealing his last name as his rekindled romance with former fiancé Jennifer Lopez got everyone talking. The two moved pretty quickly after getting back together in 2021, tying the knot not once but twice over the following year.

Lopez and Affleck’s first wedding was in Las Vegas in July, with the couple having a very low-key fling ahead of the much larger ceremony JLo and Affleck had in Georgia in August. Lopez shared plenty of details from her big day in Sin City via her On The JLo newsletter with Us Weekly, and confirmed that she’d taken Affleck’s last name into her personal life by unsubscribing from Jennifer Lynn Affleck. Awww!

While the star still uses Lopez professionally, the name change was certainly a long time coming. As you’ll probably recall, Lopez and Affleck were supposed to be married 20 years earlier but called off their wedding, though she admitted before going their separate ways that she planned to reflect her marital status in her name. In a 2003 Access Hollywood interview, which resurfaced in July, when asked what her name would be after marriage, Lopez replied, “Jennifer Lopez. But my name will obviously be Jennifer Affleck.” One thing Lopez hasn’t done, however, is go the more unique route of taking Affleck’s middle name — though that would have been a fitting move for such an unusual nickname.

There’s a touching story behind Ben Affleck’s middle name

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Turns out Ben Affleck has a pretty sentimental middle name; geza Yes, the name is certainly quite unique – and it has an important story behind it. Affleck spoke about his parents’ choice back in 2015 when speaking to the Writer’s Guild of America when he was presented with the Valentine Davies Award.

He explained that they chose the name Géza because it was the name of a friend of theirs from Hungary who survived the Holocaust but died when Affleck was born. “He was the most extraordinary person she knew. He had jumped off a train that was taking Jews to the death camps during the Holocaust, and he went back to rescue several other people to try and break them out,” Affleck shared (via Boston Herald). “Since that day, that name has never been less than a great honor for me. I’ve learned to understand and identify with the suffering of others better,” he added, but he wasn’t exactly the biggest fan when he was young. Affleck actually hated the name before he really understood the sentiment behind it. “I thought, ‘You’re the worst namesake in the world!’ … Everyone calls me ‘Ben-Gay’ … That was long before being gay was as cool as it is now,” he shared.

According to Forebears, Géza is more commonly used as a surname and translates to prince or duke.

What fans had to say about Ben Affleck’s middle name

Ben Affleck’s poignant middle name made headlines again in July, when many fans first learned of the unusual choice when he and Jennifer Lopez received a marriage license. TMZ reported that before their first big day in Sin City, the two completed all the necessary paperwork and confirmed that Affleck was credited on the papers as Ben Géza Affleck, while Lopez went by her full maiden name, Jennifer Lynn Lopez.

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Of course, since Twitter is Twitter, fans had a lot to say after learning about Affleck’s unexpected nickname. “Ben Affleck’s middle name is what now,” one person tweeted after learning of the choice of Affleck’s mother and father via the marriage certificate, while another wrote on the social media page, “Hold on the phones Ben Affleck has a Hungarian middle name? Another social media user, a Lopez fan from Hungary, added: “I can’t get over @BenAffleck having a Hungarian middle name (Géza), so weird that I see it.”

With such a poignant backstory, we love Affleck’s unique middle name!