"We got successful around the same time in the mid-'90s, so I saw him around a lot. I didn't necessarily think about him becoming a director, but I knew he was a good writer, a good-looking kid, and a good actor," Clooney told the magazine in its latest issue regarding Affleck. "Then I watched as he struggled, seven or eight years ago, and got stuck in a world that he wasn't enjoying very much in terms of choices of films. And he directed his way out of it.
"Hollywood loves a comeback, and he's an unbelievable comeback kid. When we saw Gone Baby Gone, we realized Ben had incredible talent. Then The Town reaffirmed it. Argo puts him in a whole different echelon; it moves him into the world of one of the better directors in the game."
Clooney, who coproduced Argo with Affleck and Grant Heslov, added that his fellow Oscar winner could also wind up being successful in the political arena as well.
"He's very smart and astute, and he works hard on issues in the Congo. But when your fallback career is being a world-class director, that's not so bad."