Happy Father’s Day to Damian Lewis!

source: Showtime
source: Showtime

Well, he may not be the best on-screen father to Dana and Chris, but we know Damian Lewis is a GREAT real-life dad 🙂

How come we know that? No, our favorite guy does not go around saying how great a dad he is… His wife, Helen McCrory though tells Daily Mail:  “I realise how lucky I am, having talked to other mothers, that Damian gets involved in his children’s day-to-day lives. In two months of filming Homeland, he’s flown back home four times in his few days off. Although that’s tough on him, it makes such a difference.”


Besides, Damian has already revealed his plans to go back home for the weekends during the Billions shoot in New York starting this summer: “When Billions starts shooting later this year, I’ll just come home from New York on the weekends — it’s amazing how many men I meet going in and out of JFK Airport who spend the week in New York, fly home to London on a Friday night, then back to New York on Sunday night in order to have the weekends with their kids, and I guess I’ll be doing the same thing.”

Sweet. Very sweet.

In a Times interview, when asked if he always wanted to be a father, Damian says: “Ah, very much. I come from a big family. A big, garrulous, happy family of six. Four children. I think I imagined … If I’m honest, I imagined a family re-enacting my childhood.”

And, it seems he literally enacts his childhood at times when he takes his kids to the park 🙂

source: Daily Mail
source: Daily Mail

From what he tells Daily Mail, it is easy to figure out that Damian Lewis is a guy who has found some almost-perfect (I am old enough to know nothing is perfect in this life!) balance between work time and family fun time:

“When you’re away from home and working on location, if you’re not careful, you can let that become the time you let rip. You work hard and after you finish work you go out and have a great time and socialise, and this, that and the other . . . but you run the danger of the time when you’re away from family becoming the fun time, and the time when you go home being about getting up at 5am and looking after the kids until you’re ready to stick a fork in your eye.

‘So what I do is, I turn my away time into just my work time. There’s lots of work I can be doing when I’m on location and not on the set, and that’s what I do when I’m away.

‘It’s not necessarily the healthiest way to pass the time — when I was playing Brody in Homeland, I got quite introspective and spent too much time mulling things over in my mind. But the pay-off is when I come home, I make that the fun time with Helen and the kids — it’s the time I look forward to.’

Helen likes it, too. My traditional greeting from her when I do turn up is, ‘There you are, Damian, welcome home, here are the kids, I’ll see you in a couple of days.”

Hilarious 🙂

But it’s equally easy to figure out that it is not a piece of cake for two successful actors living together to coordinate life with two young kids and two very busy travel schedules! Chances are, one parent, would sometimes be away from home.


So, what happens when Damian has to be away from home?

“As for the times I can’t be with them — Skype is a godsend, although if my children are in the middle of watching something on TV, forget it! We’re a family of gipsies, really, and we find ways to deal with it. Getting it right, getting it wrong, the usual.”

Damian tells People magazine in a 2012 interview about how they manage family life during Homeland shoot:

“It’s not a sob story because we film through the summer vacation so they come over for two months and we all hang out. But there’s still a lot of to-ing and fro-ing to make it all work.

When I do get home I love just sitting on the floor of the playroom and playing. My little guy likes to set up figures and have a battle. Castles attack castles or cowboys versus aliens. And we all just hang out.”

And, it seems he knows how to make his kids laugh even when he’s away!

Damian tells Vogue that once he had to be in Los Angeles on Halloween, and he just went out and bought an “absurdly scary” clown costume, conducted a Skype call with his kids wearing that costume!

But then it gets tougher at times that he feels he is missing out on his children’s young lives. He tells Vogue about a conversation he had with his son Gully:

“I was talking to Gully about something completely different and suddenly, without even looking at me, he said, ‘D’you know, Dad? When you’re away, sometimes I look out of my bedroom window at night and I call your name, and I cry.'”

“I wrestle with this. I wrestle with it… Children like you being around, you see. They really just like you being around. I don’t think there is any substitute for doing it well and just doing it right. And doing it right is just being there. And being good at it when you’re there. No one’s perfect, God knows, but being there is a good start.”

Getting it right, getting it wrong, the usual, huh? Love it! 

Let’s close with a sweet story Damian tells about himself being a “self-respecting” dad on Desert Island Discs with Kirsty Young:

“Just to combat the onslaught of Taylor Swift in the car when I am with the kids… is, you know, what every self-respecting dad should do which is to force the music of his youth onto his own children. It turns out they absolutely love this (Madness by Baggy Trousers). And, when I am on my desert island, I will hear their laughter and I will hear the mad singing of the family in the car.”

Wanna hear the song? Here it is!

Happy Father’s Day, Damian!

Wish you many, many, many years of happy laughter and mad singing of the family!


Author: Damianista

Academic, Traveler, Blogger, Runner, Theatre Lover, Wine Snob, Part-time New Yorker, and Walking Damian Lewis Encyclopedia :D Procrastinated about a fan's diary on Damian Lewis for a while and the rest is history!

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