Matthew McConaughey Tells His Kids Never-Ending Stories

04/22/2013 at 02:00 PM ET

Matthew McConaughey
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty

Matthew McConaughey is one busy dad. The actor recently shot three films back-to-back, but when he’s not working, his most beloved activity is leading story time with his three children.

“My favorite thing is reading a five-minute story that turns into a never-ending story,” McConaughey, 43, told PEOPLE at Sunday’s Cinema Society screening of Mud, sponsored by Fiji Water, in New York City. “When it’s story time and I get to the end, there’s no the end. The kids hate the end!”

During story time, the former Sexiest Man Alive also creates his own imaginary tales for Levi, 4½, Vida, 3, and Livingston, 4 months. One original fable McConaughey tells includes a cheetah and a horse.

“What you learn when you have kids is that they think four-dimensionally,” says the doting dad. “I’ll tell them the story about a cheetah that ran and became friends with a horse and then a river came through and they were separated. Then I’ll go, ‘The end.’ But Levi [replies], ‘Well no, the cheetah grew wings and flew back over the river.’ There’s no ending, so it’s on and on and on!”

His eldest child isn’t just chatty in person — the Dallas Buyers Club star says his son likes talking on the phone when he’s home with Camila in Austin as well.

“I’ll have a 74-minute phone call with him,” says McConaughey. “It’s great and he’s only 4!”

— Paul Chi

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Showing 28 comments

Alissa on

Love it! Love this family…Matthew especially!

Holly on

I love Matthew McConaughey and love watching him in movies. Heck I’d watch him hang wallpaper. But he really needs to gain the weight back. He doesn’t look good at all. 😦

Deanna on

Did he lose weight for one of his rolls? He needs to put on about 10 pounds or it is a bad picture of him with his lovely wife.

Annie on

Love Matthew and he sounds like a fabulous husband and father – but what’s up with that suit!

Hal on

Big deal… Now tell them about you never ending mental problem. Werido!

jimmygirl79 on

Love Matthew! But what’s with this horribly unflattering photo accompanying the story!? lol

Gotta Be Real! on

Any of those stories about playing bongos, nude, with a joint?

Alayna on

He is looking much healthier.

Kim on

Hmm, his eyelid plastic surgery does not look good.

Anonymous on

Holly and Deanna- That’s an old picture, from when Matthew was just starting to put the weight that he lost for Dallas Buyers Club back on. He looks much better and healthier now (google recent pictures of him and you’ll see what I mean!). 🙂

blue_moon on

The sweetest dad ever–so touched that he makes up his own childrens stories and that he has actually talked on the phone 74 minutes to his four year old son. I know men who don’t talk to their children 74 minutes a year. Love Matthew McConaughey now more than ever!

Connie on

Wow – he looks terrible. He needs to put back on that weight he lost for that movie role. I hope it didn’t do permanent damage because it has really aged him.

Lisa on

@Deanna, yes, he did lose weight for the Dallas Buyers Club, losing down into the 130’s to play a person with HIV/AIDS. I saw him interviewed the other day and he says he’s back in the 170’s and still has 10 pounds or so to gain, but he still looks unwell. I hope he’s able to get back to looking/being healthy again.

Linda W on

Just another great McConaughey tradition. I love this family. From what they share with us, They love the beach, living ,wearing and being the most comfortable as they can. there house is full of Moroccan thing s. I think that’s what it is, I know it’s beautiful. And I get the feeling all of there friends feel right at home with them. But I agree MM needs to gain some weight, unless he has another role, he doesn’t look healthy.

LPW on

Love this fam!

alyce on

what has happened to Mathew? Just a couple years ago he was gorgeous…. now? what is up with his face? He is hollow, drawn, looking ill or old or what has happened??

barb on

I use to think he was soooo handsome but something’s definitely changed..I know he lost a lot of weight but I hope it didn’t harm his health 🙂

Amelia on

Anonymous – no, it isn’t. The photo is from Sunday evening.

Holly on

Anonymous – I’ve seen recent pictures and he has gained some weight back, but this picture is from a movie premier Sunday night. So it’s pretty recent.

Zip on

I think the weight loos hurt him physically. I hope things turn around for him.

Dayle on

Matthew does not look that good. He looks like he has too much makeup on and he also needs to put on some weight. He looks plastic.

Anonymous on

Matt, gain more weight, you don’t look so hot!

Dorie on

Losing all that weight damaged him. He looks really bad!! 😦

Carrie on

Boy he used to be really cute but not anymore….yuk!

KO on

You’ll have that when you’re high. Explains the 74 min phone call with a 4 year old too.

Awwwshucks on

Isn’t there any better looking photos of Mathew McConaughey other than this emaciated looking one?

Anonymous on

KO- You seriously think that a father talking on the phone to his son for 74 minutes is something to be concerned about?! Personally, I think he should be commended for it and wish more fathers would follow his example!

As far as his weight goes, as Lisa said, he said recently that he IS gaining the weight back but still has about ten pounds more to go. So I think we need to lay off him a bit! We can’t expect him to gain it all back overnight!

Anonymous on

Also, he has a four month old at home, so I’m sure he’s exhausted and that’s contributing to him not looking so good, too!