Jennifer Lopez gets emotional recalling split from Ben Affleck in 2004: 'I couldn't talk for so many years'

Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck  (Getty Images)
Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck (Getty Images)

Jennifer Lopez was left emotional as she recalled breaking off her engagement to Ben Affleck in 2004.

The couple originally met on the set of the universally panned Gigli in 2001, while J-Lo was still married to her second husband, dancer Chris Judd.

Collectively known as “Bennifer”, they got engaged in November 2002 after a whirlwind romance, however, days before they were due to get married, they called off the wedding citing “media attention” and eventually split in 2004.

The same year that she and Affleck split, Lopez went on to marry singer Marc Anthony, who filed for divorce in 2014. Affleck meanwhile married actress Jennifer Garner and had three children, before the couple filed for divorce in 2017.

During Lopez’s marriage with Marc Anthony, the pair had two children, twins now aged 15.

Now Lopez, 54, has reflected on their spilt two decades ago and the impact it had on her in her new documentary, The Greatest Love Story Never Told, admitting she “couldn’t talk” about it for “many years”.

Jennifer Lopez in the documentary (Prime Video)
Jennifer Lopez in the documentary (Prime Video)

The Hustlers star said: “Ben and I broke up three days before our wedding and we crumbled under the pressure. You think you're doing ok so you shrug it off.

“I had a broken heart once I lost the love of my life, my best friend, and I couldn't talk for so many years and that was the hardest part.

“I used to think it was everyone else who was broken, now I think it was just me.”

The couple pictured in Lopez’s new documentary (Prime Video)
The couple pictured in Lopez’s new documentary (Prime Video)

The pair rekindled their romance in April 2021 and wed in July 2022.

While trying to navigate their new romance two decades on from their split, two-time Oscar winner Affleck revealed he initially asked his wife to keep their relationship offline, which she has largely respected apart from a handful of photos.

“Getting back together, I said, 'Listen, one of the things I don't want is a relationship on social media,” the actor recalled.

“Then I sort of realised it's not a fair thing to ask. It's sort of like, you're gonna marry a boat captain and you go, ‘Well, I don't like the water.’

“We're just two people with different kinds of approaches trying to learn to compromise.”

During the documentary, Lopez acknowledged her husband’s discomfort with putting their relationship in the spotlight after enduring intense media scrutiny when they first dated.

“I don't think [Ben] is very comfortable with me doing all of this,” she said.

“But he loves me, he knows I'm an artist, and he's gonna support me in every way he can because he knows you can't stop me from making the music I made… he doesn't want to stop me.

“But that doesn't mean he's comfortable being the muse.”