Jennifer Lopez Says Las Vegas Elopement Was All Ben Affleck's Idea

The actor planned the entire event.

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez hugging

Gotham / Getty Images

Before Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck threw an extravagant wedding at the actor’s home in Riceboro, Georgia, featuring a tree-lined tent and a waterfront dinner, the couple made their marriage official during an impromptu ceremony in Las Vegas. While making an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live on January 18, 2023, the triple threat talked about how the pair made the decision to trade vows in Sin City on July 17, 2022. During the talk show, the Marry Me actress revealed that planning their wedding was a stressful experience. Since the duo’s previous engagement back in 2002 didn’t lead to marriage, Lopez says it was a highly emotional time in her life. "Twenty years ago, we were supposed to get married, and it kind of all fell apart back then," she notes. "And this time, I absolutely had a little PTSD. I was like, 'Is this happening? Is this really happening?' And we were so happy. Of course it was happening, but I just felt the wedding was so stressful." 

She told host Jimmy Kimmel that one wedding planning meeting was particularly overwhelming upon hearing that they should consider getting married in Italy, not Georgia. “We hung up the phone, and I was like, ‘This is crazy. What are we doing?’” Lopez recalls. Affleck had a simple solution. “Ben just says, ‘F**k it, let’s just go to Vegas and get married tonight,’” the “On the Floor” singer remembers. At first, Lopez was hesitant because she had a rehearsal for one of her shows that night, but Affleck had a plan. “He was like, ‘Go to rehearsal,’” she recounts. “’When you get back here, I’m going to have everything all set up.’ Three of our kids were at camp. Two of them were with us, and he was like, ‘They’re going to be our witnesses. Let’s go. We’re doing it tonight.’ And we did.”

Before trading vows at the Little White Wedding Chapel, the couple had to obtain their marriage license at the county clerks office. Many other couples were also waiting in line, Lopez recalls. “Everybody was chill,” the singer, actress, and dancer says. “They weren’t freaking out or anything. They were talking to us. They were like, ‘Hey, what are you doing here?’” After the future newlyweds secured the legal document, it was time for the ceremony. Lopez tells Kimmel that the chapel didn’t require an Elvis impersonator, which ended up being convenient since she says Elvis couldn’t get out of bed. The couple tied the knot in private with just their children present.

A month later, the newlyweds got married once again, but the second time, they invited all of their friends and family. According to Yahoo, they hosted a three-day celebration, which also included a rehearsal dinner and post-wedding barbecue. Many high-profile individuals, such as Matt Damon, Kevin Smith, and Patrick Whitesell, attended the event, People reports. Podcaster and life coach Jay Shetty even officiated. During a press conference last week for Lopez’s new movie, Shotgun Wedding, the multi-hyphenate explained that although Affleck planned their Vegas elopement, the next phase of festivities was a team effort.

The duo first met in 2001 on the set of Gigli and announced their engagement the following year. After deciding to call off their wedding, both actors began serious relationships with other people. Lopez went on to marry Marc Anthony in 2004, with whom she shares twins Max and Emma, and got engaged to Alex Rodriguez in 2019. Affleck wed Jennifer Garner in 2005 and welcomed three children, Violet, Seraphina, and Samuel, before splitting in 2015. Nearly two decades after Affleck and Lopez first started dating, they piqued everyone’s interest once they resumed their romance in 2021. The duo confirmed their second engagement in April of 2022.

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  1. According to the New York Post, Ben Affleck's home in Riceboro, Georgia, is a former rice plantation that dates back to the pre-Civl War era. In accordance with our diversity pledgeBrides will not run real weddings held on plantations with a history of slavery, but as we report on celebrity news, we will always disclose facts that are not aligned with our brand's core values.

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