Forget Zayn Malik’s head tattoo: Ben Affleck just debuted a piece of artwork that makes Malik’s new rose look tiny! While filming his new movie Triple Frontier in Hawaii over the weekend, Affleck was photographed hanging on the beach with co-stars Charlie Hunnam, Oscar Isaac, and Garrett Hedlund. The photos, as obtained by ET, showed off a massive back tattoo that had us doing a double take, and as it turns out, the piece has quite the, erm, backstory.
The colorful design, which showcases a phoenix (a mystical bird that has origins in Greek mythology and symbolizes rebirth) has actually been seen before, back in 2015, shortly after Affleck announced that he was separating from his wife of 10 years, Jennifer Garner.
Garner addressed the tattoo in the best way possible, joking to Vanity Fair in February 2016, “You know what we would say in my hometown about that? ‘Bless his heart.’ A phoenix rising from the ashes. Am I the ashes in this scenario? I take umbrage. I refuse to be the ashes.”
One of Affleck’s other famous exes was a bit more blunt about the tat, however. While appearing on Watch What Happens Live that same month, Jennifer Lopez told Andy Cohen exactly what she thought of the large bird on her former fiancé’s back. “It’s awful!” the singer laughed. “I would tell him that. What are you doing? It has too many colors! His tattoos always have too many colors. They shouldn’t be so colorful, you know what I mean? They should be, like, cooler.”
The father of three denied the ink was real, however, telling Mario Lopez in an interview on Extra! that it was for a movie. “I actually do have a number of tattoos… but I try to have them in places where you don’t have to do a lot of cover up,” he continued. “They get sort of addictive, tattoos, after awhile.”
What do you think of the hubbub surrounding Ben’s phoenix tat? Let us know over @BritandCo.
(Photos via Stephanie Keith/Getty)