Noted philanthropist Laurene Powell Jobs, who — through her foundation, Emerson Collective — owns The Atlantic and California Sunday, appears to have engaged in a new act of charity: taking Ben Affleck to dinner. The Daily Mail reports that Affleck and Powell Jobs arrived and departed separately to a three-hour dinner at Giorgio Baldi in Santa Monica, California.
The 47-year-old actor, who has had such career turns as the worst incarnation of Batman, has been going through a rough patch. For instance, after his divorce from actress Jennifer Garner, he briefly dated the family’s nanny. He also got a giant phoenix tattooed on his back, then lied about it.
Powell Jobs, 55, is known primarily for her philanthropy. Emerson Collective acquired a majority stake in The Atlantic as the bottom began to fall out on digital advertising. Other Emerson Collective investments include Axios Media and Gimlet Media as well as grants for specific stores in other outlets. The group has interests in education, health, social justice, and immigration as well.
Affleck is also known for charity work — specifically, his Eastern Congo Initiative, which was set up in 2010. It’s a grantmaking body meant to support economic and social development in the area, as well as driving policy changes in the US that might benefit the region.
It is entirely possible, even likely, that the two are collaborating on some new charitable contribution. But if this dinner was a personal rather than professional opportunity, it seems worth reminding Powell Jobs that the best modern iteration of Batman is Michael Keaton from the Tim Burton Batman movies. Some light Googling suggests he is single.