"I'd like to thank the Academy," Affleck said to supportive cheers from the audience. "I'm kidding, this is the one that counts," he added.
"It's very very cool for me. There was a time when Ben Affleck's Critics' Award was a 'Saturday Night Live' sketch," the 40-year-old actor joked, referring to his mid-2000s career slump that made him the butt of jokes for years.
A slew of mediocre films and the failed "Bennifer" relationship of 2004 could still be putting off Oscar voters, one observer noted Wednesday:
Senate Democrats to pull all-nighter on climate change
Teacher apologizes for showing sexual image of herself in class