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PHOTOS & VIDEO: Michael Douglas Returns To The Red Carpet; Says 'It's About Time'

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Jan. 14 2011, Published 2:35 p.m. ET

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Michael Douglas walked the red carpet at the Palm Springs Film Festival Thursday night, marking his first public appearance since announcing that his stage IV throat tumor is now gone.

Douglas -- accompanied by his gorgeous wife Catherine Zeta-Jones -- was at the festival to accept its Icon Award.

In an interview broadcast on CBS' The Early Show, Douglas -- whose voice was noticeably strained and scratchy after months of treatment -- jokingly said "it's about time"  -- refering to his return to the limelight.

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The Oscar winning Wall Street star, 66, also acknowledged his good fortune, saying: "It's been a cycle of only about seven months since the discovery, and it was handled pretty intensely. Other people obviously have had a lot longer periods to deal with it."

Douglas -- looking stronger than he has in weeks -- said he's gained back 12 of the 40 pounds he lost during an aggressive eight-week treatment of chemo and radiation.

Talking about his relationship with his Oscar winning wife, Catherine, he said: "It's made us closer.. There's a depth of emotion and an appreciation of your daily life that you didn't have before."

Douglas is set to begin shooting director Steven Soderbergh's big screen bio-pic, Liberace, in May or June. Douglas will play the flamboyant pianist while Matt Damon will co-star as Liberace's young lover.

Douglas' next public appearance will be Sunday at the Golden Globes in Los Angeles, where he's nominatedfor his performance in Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps.

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