Ben 'n' Jen axed from ads for new movie 'Jersey Girl'

LONDON - Hot on the heels of their first flop movie together, Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez have been axed from posters for their new movie 'Jersey Girl' over fears that it will deter film fans.

The pair's first movie together, 'Gigli', was a box-office disaster, taking next to nothing in the US and quietly shuffling out of cinemas in the UK after just a week.

Miramax, which is producing 'Jersey Girl', is reported to have told its marketing team to scrap ads featuring the stars after 'Gigli' bombed.

A source told The Sun: "After 'Gigli', Miramax doesn't want to take any chances with another laughing stock flop. They're going to promote this as a Kevin Smith movie."

Miramax is certainly taking no chances. Not only has Lopez been cut from posters, but her character features for only the first 15 minutes of the film before being killed off. Lopez had originally had a bigger role, but her screen time was cut by director Kevin Smith after audiences at test screenings reacted badly to her character.

The axing of Lopez and the downplaying of her role will be welcomed by the fans of director Smith, who is behind the indie movies 'Clerks', 'Mallrats', 'Chasing Amy', 'Dogma' and 'Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back'.

Affleck has featured in four Smith movies so far, with 'Jersey Girl', which refers to the Affleck character's six-year-old daughter in the movie, being his fifth. He had smaller roles in 'Mallrats' and 'Jay & Silent Bob Strike back', but was the lead in 'Chasing Amy', which is seen as his breakout role. He went on to co-star in 'Dogma' with his friend and actor Matt Damon who has a cameo in the new movie.

The filming of 'Jersey Girl' seems to mirror that of 'Gigli', in which the pair were reported to lack on-screen chemistry and the ending had to be reshot.

It is now most famous for the infamous line uttered by Lopez -- "It's turkey time, gobble gobble gobble". The dialogue was delivered at a key moment where J-Lo is meant to be seducing Affleck for the first time.

Before 'Gigli' bombed, Miramax boss Harvey Weinstein had been keen to keep as much of Lopez in as possible and is reported to have told Smith: "Let’s leave as much of Jennifer in... because we paid her $4m for the movie."

The latest movie set-back follows the cancellation of the Jen & Ben marriage last month.

'Jersey Girl' tells the story of Ollie Trinke, played by Affleck, a young man at the top of his game as a music promoter who is both a workaholic and a bit of press spin doctor.

At a company Christmas party, Ollie meets Gertrude Steiney, played by Lopez, a book editor for a New York publishing house. The two are instantly attracted to each other, and begin a whirlwind romance that changes the course of his personal and professional life.

Early on in his production diary, Smith wrote: "If you're ever shooting a movie about two people falling in love, I can't urge you strongly enough to cast a pair of people who are actually falling in love. The chemistry between Ben and Jen is so palpable, you could almost bottle it and sell it as an aphrodisiac. Honestly, the performances they gave were nothing short of spellbinding."

"He [Affleck] really had a great time working with Lopez and pushed her big-time for 'Jersey Girl'," Smith says.

The movie also stars Liv Tyler and Jason Biggs.

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