Red Table Talk: Matthew McConaughey and His Mother Kay Open Up About Their 8-Year Estrangement

"I was not able to talk to her as my mom for about eight years," the actor said of the rift he and his mother experienced

Matthew and his mother Kay McConaughey are reflecting on an eight-year period during which they didn't speak.

The actor appeared on Facebook Watch's popular show Red Table Talk alongside his 88-year-old mother in their first joint-interview where they spoke about healing a rift caused by the Oscar winner's fame — and his mother's love for it. The Oscar winner was on Red Table Talk to tout his new memoir, Greenlights.

"As soon as I got 'famous' after [1996's] A Time to Kill, I started to have my weekly Sunday call home to call my mother," McConaughey, 51, told hosts Jada Pinkett Smith, Willow Smith and Adrienne Banfield Norris.

But something had changed at home. "Mother wasn’t answering the phone. A fan of my fame was answering the phone."

"I was trying to find my own balance with fame and stuff. And I would share things with her... some of those things I would share might show up in the six o’clock news three days later," he recalled as Kay sat next to him.

matthew mcconaughey
Matthew and Kay McConaughey. Michael Buckner/Getty Images

The father of three said he was shocked to find his mother had allowed cameras for the tabloid news show Hard Copy into the family's home. McConaughey remembered watching the segment on TV as his mother showed the cameras his childhood bedroom and shared private family stories.

"I call her up and of course, she’s watching it too and I hear the same damn show in the background," he said, recalling his mother's response: "She goes, ‘I didn’t think you’d find out.'"

The moment caused the Dallas Buyers Club star to shut Kay out, saying, "I was not able to talk to her as my mom for about eight years."

"There were years there where I would not share things with her because I was also finding my own balance. I was like, 'Look, mom, loose lips will sink ships. There are a lot of people that would like to know these things and it's none of their business.'"

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Over time, McConaughey was able to get the handle he wanted on his career, saying, "My boat was built well enough where I didn’t feel like she could sink it. We healed that up in 2004."

Kay admitted to "enjoying his fame more than he was, I guess."

"You know, aren't we proud?" she added to Banfield Norris, Pinkett Smith's mother.

Banfield Norris, 67, agreed, saying, "We are proud but we also don't understand that it’s such hard work for them and also being in the spotlight all the time. I have to agree with you, Kay, that I enjoyed [Jada's] spotlight."

"Way more than I did!" Pinkett Smith, 49, added, laughing.

Kay has been staying with her son, his wife, Camila, and their three children throughout the coronavirus lockdown.

In May, the actor opened up about what it was like having his whole family under one roof during a virtual chat for the Washington Redskins schedule release party.

"We’re good man, we’re down here in Texas," he began. "We’ve got my Mom over here, she’s 88, I cannot keep up with her! I’ve got three kids, they’re redecorating rooms. I’m getting to know my pets better. I know where the water main line is on the property now, and I didn’t know it before."

He continued, "I know a whole lot more about my house and my family than I did two months ago!"

Red Table Talk airs Tuesdays on Facebook Watch at 12 p.m. EST.

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