The couple stepped out at AARP’s 15th Annual Movies for Grownups Awards on Monday in Beverly Hills, and Douglas opened up about maintaining both his health and his marriage.
“I think it’s just moment to moment,” Douglas, 71, told reporters of his marriage, which is going strong again after the pair split briefly in 2013. “Catherine reminds me, I like to say sometimes, we all make more efforts to strangers than we do to the people closest to us.”
Zeta-Jones, 46, stunned in an Escada jumpsuit, with her dark tresses hanging over her shoulders. Douglas, who was honored with a career achievement award at the event, opted for a blue Canali suit with a red tie.
The two looked to be in good spirits at the event, sharing intimate whispers with each other as they sat at a table that included Bette Midler.
Douglas said that his love for Zeta-Jones has also played a role in his health.
“I think love, without getting too corny, nourishing each other, working at relationships, good sustenance, good food, good kids, all kind of a combination,” he said.
Douglas was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2010 and declared in remission in January 2011. Douglas said that his health has become a priority in recent years.
“I’m cancer-free and five years out. And that normally means that everything’s over. Health becomes a priority,” he said. “Working out well, you’re watching your diet. Watching how much you drink, that kind of stuff.”
He also joked that the 25-year age difference between himself and his wife might keep him young after Zeta-Jones told reporters that “he’s a good commercial for AARP because he’s fit in mind, body, and soul. And I think that’s longevity, right there.”
“And marry somebody quite younger than you are, and try to keep up with them,” he added with a laugh.
Douglas made a similar remark during his speech, joking that “the AARP does such great work to support the elderly, as does my wife Catherine, from the moment she married me! Darling I thank you for all your support, and the family.”
Freeman, 78, reflected on his lengthy career ahead of the event, telling PEOPLE on the red carpet that he once thought his career was over.
“I hadn’t worked by 1982, I hadn’t worked since 1980. I thought, ‘Well, okay, my 15 minutes are up,’ ” he said.
He also said that faith kept him going during the rough patch.
“Faith, just belief that eventually the phone would ring. Luck. Providence always steps in and takes a hand in your life,” he said. “I went to an audition, I was turned down. And then, the director, producer, star changed his mind and said, ‘No, no, come on. I want you.’
“So it’s like money. You got some, you get some. Simple as that.”