WATCH: Hugh Jackman Cries While Discussing His Mother on '60 Minutes'

The actor broke into tears while describing how his mother abandoned his family when he was a child

Hugh Jackman isn't afraid of showing emotion on camera -- whether he's playing a character or just being himself. The Les Miserables actor opened up on 60 Minutes about the sorrow of his mother abandoning the family when he was just 8 years old.

On the Dec. 9 episode of the CBS news show, Jackman, 44, discussed the difficult time in his life when his mom left the family behind in Australia and moved all the way to England.

"I can remember the morning she left, it's weird the things you pick up," he said with tears in his eyes. "I remember her being in a towel around her head and saying goodbye, must have been the way she said goodbye. As I went off to school, when I came back, there was no one there in the house."

The stage-and-screen star continued with the sad memory: "The next day there was a telegram from England, Mom was there. And then that was it. I don't think she thought for a second it would be forever. I think she thought it was, 'I just need to get away, and I'll come back.' Dad used to pray every night that Mom would come back."

Jackman was the baby of the house -- the youngest of five siblings. His father Chris immediately did his best to tackle the role of single parent.

"My father is a rock. My father is my rock," he explained. "It's where I learned everything about loyalty, dependability, being there day in, day out, no matter what."

The actor is now a father himself, to son Oscar, 12, and daughter Ava, 7, with his wife of 16 years, Deborra-Lee Furness. Despite his status as a Hollywood leading man, Jackman still aims to follow in his father's footsteps as an exemplary family man.

"It's always about the family," the X-Men star said, tearily explaining his father's lessons. "It's not about work."



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