Matt Damon: Having a Family Changed My Life
08/21/2007 AT 02:55 PM EDT
The actor and father of 1-year-old Isabella tells the UK's Sunday Express that before his daughter was born all he did was work, exercise and sleep – but now life has more to it.
"I really used to have no life outside movies. I'd work all day, go to the gym and go to sleep," says Damon, 36, who married his wife Luciana in December 2005. (She also has a daughter, Alexia, from a previous marriage.) "Now I have a place to be so I come home after work."
And Damon says he'd rather be with his family than at the gym. "I've had the same personal trainer on all the Bourne films but once he left this time, that was it for me and working out because I wanted to get home to see my daughter before she went to sleep."
There are consequences to dropping his workout schedule that careful viewers may spot during The Bourne Ultimatum. "Towards the end of filming they had to shoot around my belly," Damon jokes. "If you pay close attention you'll see the zipper on my jacket creeping up and up. I had to keep that jacket on."
There are on-screen benefits to having Isabella around, though.
"Halfway through the movie [director] Paul Greengrass looked at me and said, 'You look terrible,' " says Damon. "I told him, 'I'm sorry. I'm awake all night with the baby,' to which he said, 'No, it's really good. She came along just at the right time – she's really helping your performance,' "
In the previous two Bourne films, "I'd have to achieve that same ragged look by staying out all night in Paris," adds Damon.
Though The Bourne Ultimatum was shot in at least eight different countries, Damon managed to be apart from his family just once.
"The only time they haven't come with me was for the Tangier sequence of this film and as soon as I got there I realized it was a mistake," he says. "Being apart wasn't good for any of us, so now they come everywhere with me."