Ben Affleck wanted to play an on-screen superhero to impress his boy!
The Oscar winner, 48, says on The Hollywood Reporter's Awards Chatter podcast this week that taking on the role of Batman, starting with 2016's Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, was to score brownie points among his children. Affleck shares three kids with ex-wife Jennifer Garner: daughters Violet Anne, 15, and Seraphina Rose Elizabeth, 12, plus son Samuel Garner, who turns 9 next month.
"I did Batman because I wanted to do it for my kids. I wanted to do something that my son would dig. I mean, my kids didn't see Argo," he says, referring to his 2012 drama, which won Best Picture at the Oscars. "I wore the suit to my son's birthday party, which was worth every moment of suffering on Justice League."
Elaborating on the "suffering" while making the 2017 sequel, Affleck recalls that he "started drinking too much" around that time, adding that "it's a hard thing to confront and face and deal with."
"I've been sober for a while now, and I feel really good — as healthy and good as I've ever felt," says Affleck. "And the process of recovering from alcoholism has been really instructive. I think it's great for people who aren't alcoholics, you know? Like, 'Be honest. Have integrity. Take accountability. Help other people.' It's a good set of things that they teach you. It took me a little while to get it — I had a few slips, like most people — but I feel really good."
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The Way Back actor opened up to PEOPLE in February 2020 about alcoholism, his sobriety and how grateful he is for Garner's support in his recovery. The divorced in 2018 after a three-year separation.
"I'm very grateful and respectful of her," he said of Garner, 48, at the time. "Our marriage didn't work, and that's difficult. Both of us really believe that it's important for kids to see their parents respect one another and get along, whether they're together or not."
"It's important for my kids to know that I respect and care about Jen and she treats me the same way," he added. "I have a lot of respect and gratitude toward her. And I wish her the very best."