By his own design, you won’t see Ben Affleck’s name all over the promotional push for Gone Baby Gone. If you see the trailer, in fact, you’ll notice that it’s nowhere to be found. He won’t allow the word Affleck to be used as a marketing hook unless it refers to Casey. This isn’t because he’s not proud of the work.

The words are bold and full of the kind of bravado a man needs to sell his chance for salvation. But like Harris said, Affleck has a lot at stake. He’s not going to let the kryptonite effect he’s developed over the last few years jeopardize it. That means keeping his name out of the Gone Baby Gone glare—at least until he sees how it’s received.

“I feel like this film is a linchpin for my life,” Affleck says. “My career. I have a lot riding on it. I want [the film] to work. Badly. I mean, a shitty movie comes out on 2,800 screens? I’ve been there and it’s embarrassing.”

So as uncomfortable—maybe even flat-out immunity compromising—as this buildup to Ben Affleck’s Make-or-Break Moment (take 10) has been, the first-time director seems ready to ride it out.

“That’s why there’s something really great about directing—about having authorship over something,” Affleck says. “If you don’t like this movie, I’m the guy to see. I’m the guy to criticize. I take some measure of comfort in that. It’s fair, at least.”