Sleb Safari: Ben Affleck and the League of Octordle Gentlemen

Ben Affleck is in a celebrity nerd-game group. Picture by Matt Crossick/PA
Maeve Connolly

Brace yourself, Ben Aflleck has lifted the lid on what Hollywood’s heavy hitters get up to in their downtime and it’s hair raising.

It all started with Ben chatting to the Hollywood Reporter about his new movie Air, which is about Michael Jordan’s Air Jordan trainers becoming thee trainer in the late 80s. Wait, Sleb Safari is going to try that again… thee sneaker in the late 80s. 

From there the conversation moved on to Batman, Ben’s dislike of golf, that footage from the Grammys, his production company, Jennifer Lopez pre-interview advice and then his third round of Covid-19 - which led to a much more interesting revelation.

“I’d had it a couple of times and been asymptomatic, and so I got kind of cavalier and a little bit like, ‘Wow, Covid doesn’t really actually affect me. I’m one of those people.’ And then I just got annihilated. I had the no-energy Covid, where it was too much work to pick up the phone to play Octordle,” Ben said.

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The Hollywood Reporter was straight in with “What’s Octordle?”.

“Octordle. It’s just Wordle with more words. Don’t be impressed, it’s not harder,” Ben explained offhandedly. And then he dropped this gem: “I was invited to join a cool little red velvet rope celebrity Wordle group. Matt [Damon]’s one of them. Jason Bateman and Bradley [Cooper], and … Actually, the first rule of Wordle is don’t talk about Wordle. Unless you get it in three guesses.”

Ben thought his crossword fixation and pandemic Wordle-ing practice would put him at the top of the leaderboard.

“I used to do the crossword compulsively in the mornings and think I was good at word games. And let’s face it, going up against actors, it’s not a high bar. I expected to do fairly well, so I was seriously humbled. 

“You have to do the Wordle, the Quordle and the Octordle, and add up your score, and then whoever gets the lowest score wins for the day. It’s fiercely competitive, and there’s a lot of mockery and derision. So I’m in training.”

Read more: Sleb Safari - The Bennifer Bubble Bath proposal

What a competitive, but cute,  group of word game nerds. Once they get bored of being in The League of Octordle Gentlemen they’ll move on to Duolingo and compete to learn Icelandic. They’ll be pinging each other Icelandic words on WhatsApp with points awarded to the person who’s first with the correct answer. 

Are we going to find out these men have their sights on internships at the Large Hadron collider? Or is that their post-Hollywood plan? And when will the fifth member of Octurdle Club be named? Sleb Safari's money is on WIll Arnett. Watch this space.



Daisy May Cooper tipped to play M in the next Bond film


Daisy May Cooper at the Brits 2023


Daisy May Cooper, the woman who wrote and starred in the brilliant Am I Being Unreasonable? on BBC, is tipped to take over as M in the next Bond film.

M had been played by Judi Dench but she met an untimely end in Scotland and a successor is being sought.

Daisy May would make a great M but it would be much more fun if she was Bond.


Rupert Murdoch to marry for a fifth time


Rupert Murdoch has announced his engagement to Ann Lesley Smith (Ian West/PA)


You have to admire Rupert Murdoch’s optimism, planning a fifth wedding.

The media mogul is 92 and says he “dreaded” falling in love again but it happened and he popped the question to Ann Lesley Smith on St Patrick’s Day in New York.

According to the New York Post the wedding is being arranged for late summer and the couple will split their time between California, the UK, Montana and New York.

Sleb Safari would marry Rupert if it got to split its time between luxury homes in California, New York and Montana. With careful scheduling the new Mr and Mrs Safari need never even see each other. Rupert, there’s still time to change your mind.


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