Matt Damon has praised Robert De Niro's directing abilities insisting he's a much better actor after working with his idol on new movie THE GOOD SHEPHERD. Damon admits the experience of taking guidance from De Niro made him realise how many actors are rewarded for overacting - because the CAPE FEAR star insists on keeping everything simple. Damon says, "That stuff gets rewarded a lot of the time. People stand up and cheer for so and so in this performance, and you're just going, 'What the f**k was that?' "That's why you have to just be thinking about the process... You can tell somebody how to win an award... (but) that can't be why you're doing it. "It was a great experience with De Niro because this performance was like the opposite of all of those things. I'm a much better actor for having gone through that process with him."