Matt Damon moving to Byron Bay to escape Donald Trump
ACTOR Matt Damon is reportedly moving his family to Australia - in part because the star is fed up with US President Donald Trump.
According to The Sunday Telegraph, Damon, 47, has purchased a property in Byron Bay, next door to good mate Chris Hemsworth's luxurious beachside digs. (The two pals recently appeared together in Thor: Ragnarok.)
But the New York Post is reporting that Damon might be spending a bit more time on our shores than anticipated.
A source told the New York Post that the actor has political reasons for staying out of the US.
"Matt's telling friends and colleagues in Hollywood that he's moving the family to Australia" because the activist actor disagrees with Trump's policies. The president's frequently butted heads with Hollywood A-listers including Meryl Streep.
The source added, "Matt's saying the move will not impact his work - as he will travel to wherever his projects are shooting. He's also telling friends he wants to have a safe place to raise his kids." Damon has four children with wife Luciana Barroso.
Perhaps Damon's also allowing some of the controversy to die down after he had to publicly apologise for insensitive comments he made about the wave of sexual assault allegations shaking Hollywood.
He said that the #MeToo allegations should be judged on a "spectrum of behaviour."
But later said, "I really wish I'd listened a lot more before I weighed in on this. Ultimately, what it is for me is that I don't want to further anybody's pain with anything that I do or say. And so for that I'm really sorry."
Damon and close friend Ben Affleck's production company this week said it would adopt "inclusion riders" in stars' contracts, after Frances McDormand spurred the trend from the stage at the Oscars.
Either way, it looks like Damon's cleared his schedule for the big move to Australia. He's producing a film version of Agatha Christie's Witness for the Prosecution for Affleck, 45, to star in - but besides a cameo in the upcoming Ocean's 8 that's wrapped, Damon has no major projects lined up as an actor.
His last film, Downsizing, was a critical and financial disappointment.
This story was originally published in the New York Post and is reprinted with permission.