Michael Douglas is optimistic that his marriage to Catherine Zeta-Jones will survive their recent separation, he told The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on Monday.

The 69-year-old actor opened up about his 12-year relationship with Zeta-Jones, 44.

"I've been away for a while, but everything should hopefully be on the up and up," said Douglas, who wed the Playing for Keeps actress in November 2000 in New York City's Plaza Hotel. "Sometimes people take a little bit of a break, but it doesn't necessarily mean that's the end. I'm very hopeful."

Douglas added that the couple's children, 13-year-old Dylan and 10-year-old Carys, are "doing great." One of his sons is even determined to follow in his father's footsteps into Hollywood.

"Dylan doesn't see any reason to do anything else because he wants to act," the Behind the Candelabra star told Leno. "He was at me the other day and he said, 'Look dad, I've been president of my sixth grade, my seventh grade, I'm in eighth grade now and I'm president of the school...I've been on the honor roll for two years straight...Dad, you saw me in Oliver. I played the Artful Dodger.'...He says, 'Dad, how about throwing me a bone?' I said, 'Sure, okay. We'll work on it.' "

Though at the time they were already separated, in his acceptance speech at the 2013 Emmy Awards in September Douglas said "I wanna thank my wife Catherine for her support." That night he took him his first Emmy.

Zeta-Jones did not attend the Emmy Awards and Douglas walked the red carpet alone, at times posing with his Candelabra co-star Matt Damon and his wife, Luciana Barroso.