Russell Crowe admits he has made a lot of mistakes in the past.

The 51-year-old actor - who split from wife Danielle Spencer in 2012 - doesn't think it's possible ''to live without regrets,'' but feels lucky he has a close bond with their sons, Charles and Tennyson.

He said: ''I don't see how it's possible to live without regrets. But you can chase all that stuff down, or you can just get on with it.

''These last four years have been kind of ridiculous: the separation and a whole bunch of other complications. However, it's also been a period where I've spent some of the greatest times with my kids, times we'll remember forever. That's what you do, right? It's life.''

But the Australian star believes he has learned.

He told People magazine: ''I don't see how you're educating yourself if you don't recognise moments where you weren't necessarily at your best. There are thousands of fundamentally embarrassing moments that I wish I could turn around. If you're lucky, you can pull yourself up: 'Oh, I know this one - I don't have to do that again.''

Meanwhile, the 'Gladiator' star insists he no longer needs to play the lead character in his films.

He said: ''I still play lead roles like 'Noah,' but I get just as much playing a second lead like Javert in 'Les Miserables'. If you love playing characters, all that happens is they change. I have a simple love for doing the job.''

Russell also isn't worried about getting older.

He said: ''I never put [much thought] into my age at all until I turned 48. It sounded lumpy it's a heavy journey because I can't outrun it anymore. Over time on film sets, I've gotten tears in both Achilles, shin splints, bone-marrow edemas under both knees, a rib that pops off my upper thoracic and a degenerating hip. But those are scars that I've earned.''