We’re not quite sure exactly what is going on with Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, but we do know we’re in for an entire summer (at least) of tabloid headlines about it. 17 years after calling off their engagement, one of the iconic couples of the aughts is definitely hanging out together. According to E! News, People, and TMZ, the pair, once famously known as “Bennifer,” spent a week together “hanging out” in Montana.
Lopez is fresh off ending her engagement to former MLB star Alex Rodriguez in April, while Affleck has been publicly single since he split with actress Ana de Armas sometime late last year.
According to E!, the pair both appeared separately at the VAX LIVE concert in Los Angeles—which taped on May 2nd but aired this weekend—and then jetted off to Montana. One source tells the outlet that “their chemistry cannot be denied.” Another adds, “Ben reached out to her to see how she was doing and they had dinner together a few times within this last month. It's natural between them and the chemistry is unreal. They picked up where they last left off and are enjoying each other's company right now."
Meanwhile, a source tells People that “[Jennifer] spent several days with Ben out of town. They have a strong connection. It's all been quick and intense, but Jennifer is happy.”
TMZ helpfully adds that they were at the Big Sky Resort near Yellowstone National Park.
Three separate celebrity outlets breaking the story mid-day on a Monday is likely not a coincidence. Where there’s smoke, there’s sure to be fire. How intense and how long that fire is meant to burn for, however, remains to be seen.
Lopez and Affleck famously began dating back in 2002, after meeting on the set of the film Gigli. Affleck had separated from Gwyneth Paltrow in 2000, while Lopez was ending her marriage to dancer Cris Judd. The film was a notorious critical and box office flop, but their relationship certainly helped to sell tabloids. They were engaged by November 2002, but a planned September 2003 wedding date was postponed before the couple officially called it quits in early 2004.
Lopez has at times indicated that Affleck wasn’t quite comfortable with all the media attention the relationship received. Back in a 2003 interview with W, Lopez said she had decided that she wasn’t going to speak about her relationship at all, worrying that all the chatter was a hindrance to her career. Of course, the pair have had 17 years to get more accustomed to the spotlight now—maybe the timing is just right.