Jersey Girl was an original screenplay, the first one Jeff ever
wrote. Like everything he writes, he wrote it by hand. Then
he bought a book to learn screenplay format. When he typed
it up, it turned out to be 270 pages. A normal screenplay is
less than 120 pages. And this was not an epic... just a sweet
romantic comedy about a young corporate guy who falls in
love with a waitress at the coffee shop near his office. People
begged Jeff not to show his telephone book-sized screenplay
to anyone, but he didn't listen.
The first producer he showed it to, Marcia Nasatir, had just
produced The Big Chill, for which she was nominated for an
Academy Award. She optioned Jersey Girl, and with her
guidance, Jeff cut it to normal screenplay size in a week.
There is no connection to the Ben Affleck movie.