A grown-up Matthew McConaughey faces his "Ghosts"

Fri May 1, 2009 5:40pm EDT
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By Cristy Lytal

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Moviemaking has finally collided with real life for formerly freewheeling actor Matthew McConaughey, not only in his new romantic comedy "The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past," but in his career choices, too.

In "Ghosts," which debuts in U.S. theaters on Friday, the actor plays a man who bids farewell to bachelorhood, which seems appropriate for the 39-year-old who recently bought a house in Malibu, settled down with his girlfriend Camila Alves, and welcomed his first child, Levi, into the world.

McConaughey plays Connor in the movie, a philandering celebrity photographer who runs into his childhood sweetheart, played by Jennifer Garner, at his brother's wedding.

On the eve of the nuptials, he receives visits from three ghosts, who point out the errors of his womanizing ways and scare him to death -- nearly.

"It's got a huge heart," McConaughey says of the movie that draws from the premise of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" in which angry old Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by ghosts and sees that he should become a better man.

Sitting cross-legged in a patio chair and talking to Reuters about the movie, the actor well-known for his tanned physique said his new movie is about second chances.

"It's about what would you do if you could go back in time and change things, or if you could go forward in time to see where you're going to end up, on the path you're going.

"How have your actions affected other people? Maybe Connor didn't mean to hurt anyone, but he found out he hurt a lot of people," McConaughey said.   Continued...

<p>Matthew McConaughey poses with co-star Jennifer Garner at the premiere of "The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past" at the Grauman's Chinese theatre in Hollywood, California in this April 27, 2009 file photo. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/Files</p>