George Clooney has taken in a Yazidi refugee, didn't talk about kids until marriage

The actor opens up about life as a father of two.

ByLesley Messer
September 06, 2017, 4:43 PM

— -- George Clooney has been in the spotlight for decades, and yet, in a new interview with the Hollywood Reporter, the actor gave details about his life that even his biggest fans might not have known.

In a wide-ranging chat, the actor, 56, opened up about his three-year marriage to his attorney wife, Amal, what life has been like with their three-month-old twins, Alexander and Ella, and his charity work.

"Every single day of my life, I just feel lucky," he told the publication. "Lucky in my career. Lucky enough to have found the perfect partner. Sometimes in life it doesn't happen on your schedule, but you find the person that you were always supposed to be with. That's how I feel, and I know that's how Amal feels."

PHOTO: George Clooney and his wife Amal Alamuddin arrive for the screening of "Suburbicon" in Venice, Sept. 2, 2017.
George Clooney and his wife Amal Alamuddin arrive for the screening of "Suburbicon" in Venice, Sept. 2, 2017.
Marco Piovanotto/Sipa via AP Images

Among the revelations Clooney made:

1. He realized he wanted to marry Amal just a few months after their first date: Four months after he first went out with Amal, at Abbey Road Studios in London, he bought an engagement ring and began planning his proposal. On April 28, 2014, he prepared a soundtrack of romantic songs by his late aunt, singer Rosemary Clooney, and made his then-girlfriend a pasta dinner at home.

"Over champagne, after dinner, I told her there was a lighter to light the candle in the drawer, and she reached back and pulled out a ring. And I did all the stuff, got down on my knee and did all the things you're supposed to do," he said.

"I was waiting for this song, 'Why Shouldn't I?' 'Why shouldn't I take a chance when romance passes by? / Why shouldn't I know of love?' It's a really good song about why can't I be in love? And it played, and she's like, 'Holy s--t!' And she just kept staring at the ring, going, 'Oh, my God.' It was 20 minutes of me on my knee, waiting for her to say yes, because she was so shocked."

The couple married in a non-denominational ceremony that September in Venice.

2. The Clooneys never discussed having children until after their wedding: After they were married, George Clooney said he and his wife decided "we'd gotten very lucky, both of us, and we should share whatever good luck we've got."

The two conceived their twins without the use of fertility drugs, he said. "[The doctor] goes, 'Well, there's one.' And I said, 'Great.' And then he goes, 'And there's the second one.' And I was like, 'What?' We just sat there, staring at that piece of paper they give you, and I kept thinking there was a mistake," he confessed.

The twins were born one month premature on June 6, 2017. "It was wild," he said. "All of a sudden you go: 'Holy s--t. I'm a parent!'"

3. Clooney is using his Casamigos Tequila millions to help others: Earlier this summer, the spirits company the actor founded with his friends was acquired by beverage company Diageo for $700 million, and Clooney told the Hollywood Reporter his cut was about $200 million. He's planning to use at least some of that to give back to others. In August, the Clooneys announced that they were creating a $1 million grant to the Southern Poverty Law Center, and he told the publication that he was going to put an additional $20 million into the Clooney Foundation for Justice.

"It will go toward educating refugees, it will go toward housing, it will go to all the things that we want to work on," he said.

4. He's currently housing a Yazidi refugee: The actor told the Hollywood Reporter that he's housing a refugee who was threatened by ISIS while on a bus to Mosul.

"He survived and came to America. He got through all the checks, and once he got through those, it was like, 'Listen, we got your back. You want to get an education? You want to move your life forward? This is something that we can do," he said.

The refugee, he said, is living in a house Clooney has in Augusta, Kentucky, and he is now a student at the University of Chicago.

5. Clooney has no plans to act again any time soon: Explaining that roles are less interesting as actors age, Clooney, who recently directed and co-wrote the film "Suburbicon," said he has no interest in being in a movie "just to be in front of the camera." And though some people have suggested that he should get into politics, he said that he believes "that would make my life miserable."

"I don't really think about that," he continued. "But I do think you always have to participate, in your town and your country and the world."

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