Michael Douglas believes prison will save his son's life.

The 65-year-old actor thinks the five-year sentence handed to Cameron, 31, for drug dealing will finally help him overcome his addiction problems and allow him to make a "fresh start" when he is released.

Michael said: "My son has not been sober for this length of time since he was 13 years old.

"So he was going to be dead or somebody was going to kill him, and I think he has a chance to start a new life and he knows that. And from my understanding, it's going to Take That amount of time for him to rebuild and start himself afresh.

"My son was a drug dealer, and he tried to kill himself for a while, and I can't condone his behaviour. With all the mistakes and the disease that Cameron has, he is a great young man and I wouldn't be supporting him if I didn't feel that way."

The 'Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps' star and ex-wife Diandra Luker were criticised by the judge presiding over Cameron's case for being "distant and problematic" parents to the DJ-and-actor during his childhood and Michael - who is now married to Catherine Zeta-Jones - accepts he made mistakes.

Speaking on US TV show 'Today', he said: "I've taken blame about being a bad father - if being a bad father is working your butt off trying to create a career at one time.

"When I had Cameron I was early in my career and as opposed to most jobs, making movies takes you all around the world, so you were absentee in that sense."

Michael has two young children with Catherine, nine-year-old Dylan and seven-year-old Carys, and the actor is now devoted to family life.

He added: "My priorities have completely changed. My marriage and my families come certainly before my career."