There is something about meeting Angelina Jolie that made everyone in the room nervous. She brings an air of elegance, and intimidation because she’s such an amazing person and the characters she plays are usually very strong and independent. I was close to shaking I was so nervous, we as people that watch lots of movies feel like we know these actors in a certain way or we expect them to be a certain way and that we might in some way let them down. But this was such an amazing experience and Angelina Jolie is such a genuine person who cares for the world, her family, and other women very deeply.
She wanted to know all about us she walked into the room saying….
Oh, this is so fun. I was so curious what this group of "Mommy Bloggers" was. This is fantastic!
At the end of the interview she was asking what all our sites were and because we didn’t want to bombard her with business cards or start yelling out our site names we told our PR rep that he’s responsible for making sure she has our blog names, so she might even read this post, and as I’ve told you before knowing that the person I’m writing about might actually read my post makes it even harder for me to write. But after meeting her I know that’s it’s important to her that I share what she said.
My friend over at SouthernBellasWays (who has been a fan of Angelina since forever for personal reasons and because of Angelina’s amazing acting ability) asked Angelina if she could talk about her humanitarian efforts and it was very moving for both of them.
Q : Can you talk about your humanitarian efforts? You have been an inspiration of mine for years. How can a regular mom, who doesn’t have all the things you do, how can we start small in our own community and do good for others?
AJ : Well I think the, you know, first of every-every mom, the most important thing we do is we raise our children with love and compassion to become great people and thoughtful of others and that’s the most important thing. If everybody did just that, we’d have a very different world. And encourage our children’s education and-and help them to be conscious of the world around them. So I think mothers have the most powerful role. There was even examples of Taliban fighters who stopped because their mothers stopped them. Because the mothers became educated. They couldn’t stop the men, but they, educate the mothers and the mothers got them back home.
So the mother’s a powerful thing. I think beyond that it is everybody know it, especially with being online, there-there is so much to connect to and there is so much that can be done. And it is, as you see now with the situation with the Nigerian girls, that’s not government, that’s not what, that’s-that’s the masses speaking out. And pushing for government change. And so, it is, it’s sometimes doesn’t feel like every voice counts, but it really does. There’s a conference in June I’d love you to be aware of that I’m doing, the Foreign Secretary of England, June tenth to the thirteenth.
Which is called PSBI, it’s the largest summit ever to end sexual violence in conflict. And it’s in England, it’s open to the public, but it’s in England. We’ve realized that it can’t, it’s not just governments, and it’s not just NGO’s, and everybody has to come together. So NATO will be there, peace keepers will be there, governments will be there, and it’s open to the public, and NGO’s, and victims, and doctors will be there. So everybody together will spend four days. I think that’s what these things take, it takes all of us very tightly working together.
We shared a bit more information about the conference yesterday…Join Angelina Jolie For The Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict #TimetoAct #MaleficentEvent.
PEOPLE ARE IMPORTANT TO ANGELINA
Now I want to share the rest of the interview with you and you an read about her role as Maleficent and how she ended up influencing a lot of decisions with the passion that she had for this film.
Q: What brought you to this moment with a family Disney movie?
I read this script and I just, I was so moved by it…..I was moved by it, as a mother. But I was also really moved by it because I thought of myself as a little girl, and I thought of all the kids I know, and I just think of that feeling different, feeling outside, and also as a woman, feeling abused and this ideal if you’ve ever been abused and then you kind of put this wall up.
And you become darker and you’re not able to be this soft person that you were born to be. And then what could possibly ever bring you back? And the…. however much we can say, but the thing that brings her back is very much the thing that brought me back. And so, I was very, very connected to it.
Q : How much of the Maleficent story did you know before you read the script?
AJ : I didn’t really know anything. When I was a little girl, I was fascinated by her. I didn’t really identify with the princesses, at the time. Princesses have gotten a little more modern and they’ve gotten a little more… it’s like, it’s like a little kid seeing Marlene Dietrich for the first time. It was like seeing this elegant, powerful woman who seemed to be having a great time and she was, just her voice… So I was a bit fascinated by her. And then when we, there was a rumor that the movie was going to be made, I got a call from my brother.
And he was like, Ang, you’ve got to, you’ve got to make a call to Disney, you got to try to get in on this. So I was very happy when I got the call. Just the idea of-of a, of a Disney movie, having children and just being a big kid myself, and wanting to do a little bit of that was fun. But I really didn’t know, we didn’t, we couldn’t, I-I joked with Linda (screenplay written by Linda Woolverton), I said, how could you possibly make a story where people have any connection to, or empathy for, somebody that curses a baby? It’s just, it’s going to be impossible. And, ah, and I think she did an extraordinary job.
Q : So how long did it take you to get ready for filming with the hair and makeup?
AJ : Ah, I think it was about two and a half hours at the end of the day. Which wasn’t bad, we had a great great team. They’d work together, Tommy and Arjen.
Q : Was the head piece heavy?
AJ : They were so great, they were so sweet in that they worked so hard to make it not heavy. My hair was in these really funny little-little buns in order to get the head piece. And then my hair was used as kind of the thing that held the head, the-the horns on. And they made it very lightweight. And then they also had detachable horns, partially for weight, and also because they kept knocking myself out. If I’d go out the door, because I was about seven and a half foot high, and I’d contact something and I couldn’t… So the first few days, I was just a complete mess. And, ah, and so they made them, that they, I could snap them. Yeah.
Q : What did you think the first time you saw yourself in full makeup and costume?
AJ : I was really happy. I was. I was really happy because we’ll be, also because we went through a few stages where, in trying to find her, we had a few that weren’t so great, you know, we went through, there was a period where we thought, okay, well she’s-she’s got wings, so she’s part bird fairy, maybe she had feather hair. You know, we went, so we went kind of in many, many different directions. And then at the end of the day, we kind of said, it has to be that, because it is a real film and she has real scenes and emotional scenes, it can’t be so much makeup that you’re starring at some pasted makeup.
The soul has to come through. So it had to be very, enough to be a creature enough to be kind of, worldly, but-but still be able to have very serious scenes. Um, so I think they-they did an amazing job.
Q : How fun is it playing a villain in a Disney movie? How did you find your voice that you use for this film? Did you just stand in front of a mirror practicing?
AJ : No, I did, my kids helped me find it. I always tell stories, I’m sure we all have a few voices. I tell them stories. I was giving them baths and I was doing this thing where a few nights in a row I would tell them stories in the bath. And I was trying out voices and a few they’d say, please stop. And then, ah, you know, sometimes, you know, they’d listen and they’d kind of be more engaged. And I kept trying and trying and trying.
And then I did that voice and they couldn’t stop laughing. And so I kept doing it more, and more, and more, and more, and more. So they still make me do it. I had to do it the other night for bedtime. But that’s why, you know, you think, okay, I have to… And for the look and everything, I would kind of run it by them, and if they, if it made them happy, or made them smile, or they were interested in it, you know, then-then it was right.
MOTHERHOOD, FAMILY IS IMPORTANT TO ANGELINA!
Q : You’ve executive produced on other film before, how was this film different as a producer?
AJ : I kind of just ended up as a producer by nature of having to do so much they just ended up…., I wasn’t early on a producer, or asked to be one. It was just, I ended up having to deal with the costumes, or deal with some of the stunts or the effects, or the makeup, or the… So it just kind of was, they felt at a certain point that I should. But I, it wasn’t like the kind of work I do when I produce things, like on Broken or other things.
Q : As a mother, how did get your daughter into the film? Did you change your perspective in the way that you did it? What was it like working with her in the film?
AJ : It was a tough choice to do it. I mean, I think everybody knows the reason why I objected, you know, because I was really scaring other kids… But it’s not frightening for children. I keep saying that, but I did scare. You know, because in person, and little kids, just really, I kept thinking I was a Disney character and I’d want to talk to them. And they’d get mad and essentially leave. So we realized what four or five year old little girl is not…can I be really mean to and say things like, I don’t like children?
And have her like be fine. We realized it was probably Vive. And-and, ah, and it took us a while to make sure that that was an okay thing to do. But the other day, I just wanted to play with her. And it was really fun. And we had … even though the first day she had to catch the butterfly …she didn’t, you know, like any four year old, she just decided she didn’t want to. So there’s some really funny outtakes of Brad and I… I’ve actually got the stick with the blue ball, that’s supposed to be the butterfly and I’m kind of running in front of her.
And Brad’s (her husband Brad Pitt) off the edge of the cliff, kind of trying to like dance and make her jump into his arms. And she made us work for that. It was the hardest working… And the people at Disney did say it was the funniest dailies that they’d ever seen. And it exists somewhere, I haven’t seen them, I should get them. But it-it was lovely. It was lovely to do it.
Q : Will we see more family eccentric movies now that you’ve gotten a taste of this?
AJ : Well on Broken, is a heavier movie, but it is, we’re-we’re aiming for PG-13. And I think it’s very important that it’s for young people, because, you know, there is so much out there that is, so aggressive and all that stuff, you know, and there can be entertainment, it can be…I did want to make Broken, because I wanted to do something that I felt was inspiring and that young people would be inspired by. My boys saw it for the first time the other day and I watched them sit through the whole thing, and I watched their heads to see if they’d move.
And they didn’t, and they asked me so many interesting questions about faith, and life, and death, and-and war. And I think it’s really, very, very important now we can talk to our kids about real life issues, and real stories, and real film, about something that makes them walk away from it feeling like there’s a chance, and that the spirit inside of them can rise up against anything, and they can feel good about that, and no matter how they start, they can rise. And that, and so that-that’s the message behind that one. But for Disney characters, we’ll see.
I did like my horns, so maybe they’ll give, maybe I’ll get another shot at it.
Q : As a mom, humanitarian, entertainment how do you do it all? I’m a mom to twins and I can’t hardly keep up with them and you have six kids. How do you do it all?
AJ : Well I don’t…., you all know as moms, I’m a very lucky position. I have a supportive partner and he and I are able to take turns working. And when you make a film, it doesn’t take all year around. When I direct it does, but I get to decide when I leave in the morning and when I come home at night, and I can edit in my bedroom, and sometimes, and would be there in case there’s an emergency with the children. So I have a very rare luxury, ah, with my job to be able to have my kids with me on set every day and home school, and, other mothers have it much harder than I do, and don’t have the means to have the assistance I do.
And I-I don’t feel like by any means, I do anything exceptional. My mom was a single mom and she had a lot of difficulty and she gave up her dreams to like to make sure she could take me to my auditions and support me. And nobody acknowledged her for what she did, you know, so that was hard. But you know, mine’s not too bad at all. I can’t complain.
Q : What did your kids think the first time they saw you in full costume?
AJ : Well some of it was.. I realized it was a bad idea, it was bad parenting on my part that I should have brought them in early and have them watch me get in my makeup. But I thought it would be really fun to surprise them. And-and they came on and they did, some of them were fine, they just got a little, you know, quiet. Pax, ran away from me. And I made the mistake of thinking he was playing a game and I chased after him. And then realized he was upset. So, he had to come in the makeup trailer and watch me take everything off.
It was interesting because we wondered, we actually wondered about Maleficent, we talked with Disney, like why is she considered the most evil? I mean, obviously she-she, what she does, but-but what is it about children that they see her, and I think that’s what happened to my children. It was because it’s a woman, and an older woman, its mom. And to my kids it was that a woman that should be like nurturing, the-the figure that should be nurturing was now the figure that was slightly terrifying.
And, ah, and on top of my kids, the mom had disappeared and they were really wanting to know where mom went. But I think that’s actually why it’s so…why she’s particularly disturbing for children. And why it maybe children will embrace her, because it does feel that you should be safe with an older woman, you know.
Q : Besides seeing you on the set, have the seen any of the finished movie yet?
AJ : They hadn’t, not the finished. They saw an early cut, which had a lot of really bad effects and really… They were very sweet about it. So no, they’re going to see it for the first time when it’s 3-D. But they did see enough and they saw Vivienne’s scene and the other kids think it’s the funniest thing they’ve ever seen. Because she is at home my little shadow and I can never get her to like give me space. So it was very funny that no matter, even at a monster I couldn’t quite get her… So they think it’s funny.