Mars dreams for Damon

LOS ANGELES: The Martian actor Matt Damon has joked he wants to go to Mars to escape the everyday stresses of family life.

“It’s funny because in my life I’m rarely by myself. With four kids I could use some time alone on Mars,” Damon, who plays an astronaut in the new Ridley Scott-directed sci-fi movie, told telegraph.co.uk.

Despite being among the most bankable stars in Hollywood, Damon said his stable family life means he finds it easy to escape the attention of the paparazzi cameras and fans.

“I’m a married man with kids and there’s no scandal about me,” the 44-year-old, who has four daughters with his Argentine wife Luciana Barroso — stepdaughter Alexia, 17, and Isabella, nine, Gia, six, and five-year-old Stella, said.

“So long as the photographers get an updated picture every six months, they’re okay.

“A picture of us isn’t as valuable as a picture of somebody who may cause some scandal and I don’t think I’ve done anything to create any mystique around myself,” he added.

Damon, who is facing backlash over his comments about sexuality in Hollywood, wants the world to know that he does not think gay actors should stay in the closet.

During a pretaped appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show Damon said comments he made about gay actors in a recent interview have been taken out of context.

“I was just trying to say actors are more effective when they’re a mystery, right?” he said.

“And somebody picked it up and said I said gay actors should get back in the closet. Which is like, I mean it’s stupid, but it is painful when things get said that you don’t believe. You know what I mean? And then it gets represented that that’s what you believe,” he said.

Damon also recalled how earlier in his career, he and his Good Will Hunting co-writer and co-star Ben Affleck dealt with rumours they were gay.

He added that in today’s media landscape, “There’s no real penalty for just taking the ball and running with it. You know what I mean? You’re just trying to click on your thing.”