Ben Affleck Sports a Beard and Retro ‘Do for ‘Argo’

Erin Carlson, The Famous
Movie Talk
Ben Affleck
Ben Affleck

What's the deal with Ben Affleck's bizarre new look? The actor's full beard, retro leisure suit and shaggy mane suggest that he's 1) time-traveled back to the 1970s 2) having a midlife crisis, hence the Bieber-ish hair or 3) on the set of his new movie, "Argo."

If you guessed No. 3, you would be correct!

These photographs show Affleck decked out in period garb while filming scenes in Hollywood for his role in "Argo," a star-studded drama about the 1979 Iran hostage crisis.

The hirsute look is a far cry from his clean-cut NASA-driller hunk in "Armageddon," and much more manly than the freshly scrubbed, short-on-the-sides-puffy-on-top 'do he sported in "Good Will Hunting."

Affleck, who demonstrated his directing chops in the critically acclaimed 2010 drama "The Town" and 2007's "Gone Baby Gone," both directs and stars the movie. He recruited a who's who of gravitas-projecting, respected actors including Bryan Cranston, John Goodman and Alan Arkin, pictured walking next to Affleck in the photo to the right. George Clooney is taking a behind-the-scenes role as producer.

The movie, slated for release in 2012, is based on the true story of a CIA "exfiltration" specialist (Affleck) who cooks up a crazy scheme to free six American hostages stranded in the home of the Canadian ambassador to Iran.

Sounds like an intense -- and extremely rewarding -- professional endeavor. (Two words: Oscar bait.) Personally, Affleck is also very busy: the actor and his wife, Jennifer Garner, recently confirmed that they're expecting a third child.

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