Okay, there are like a million new Angelina Jolie interviews today, probably because The Tourist’s junket officially kicked off yesterday. We saw Jolie heading into the junket yesterday, wearing her fabulous grey coat porn. Today, we have more “Angelina walking into a Paris junket” photos, this time with brown/camel coat porn. CB and I prefer the grey, but the boots and the Gucci bag are amazing, right? Anyway, here are some bits and pieces from Pop Sugar’s interview with La Jolie… she talks about The Tourist, of course, and Johnny Depp, and she even gets into her inspiration for the character. Hint: it was one of her kids (NOT FAX!).
The wardrobe in this movie is beautiful; did you have input in the process?
Angelina Jolie: [Costume designer Colleen Atwood] was very specific about what she liked, but I did certainly chime in about things I thought were right for the character. We wanted to make sure that she had a kind of sexiness and elegance, but also that she was fun, playful, and sweet. Instead of a big high slit, [Colleen] put a bow in the bum. It was very different than anything I’ve ever worn. It took me a while to get used to the heels and the gloves and how to hold the handbag. I think everyone knows I’m not necessarily that female. So it was a bit of an exercise in having the fun of being a girl. Having come off literally being a guy in Salt, it was nice to rediscover female.
Your character sort of floats through this movie, away from the action; how was that for a change?
AJ: My note that I got probably every day was “slow down.” I think as very modern women we feel the need to attack things, we’re like New Yorkers. [The director] was trying to teach me a certain way of being bred, this elegance, like time moves around you, you don’t meet it. The hardest thing for me was to kind of take a deep breath and glide a little more.
Did you have any specific inspiration for your character?
AJ: A combination of what we all think in our minds of female, all the different references. My mother had a real softness to her and was very gracious. Vivienne, my youngest daughter, is extremely female and very naturally a real girl. I kind of played Vivienne in the film. [Laughs.] I tried not to pin it down to one person so much.
What were the good and bad aspects of filming in Venice?
AJ: Not a lot of bad. The good was just everything. The kids had a good time. As a parent you feel responsible to teach your kids about culture — so you get this great feeling — done! Live in Venice for two months, have an Italian teacher, so that was great.
With such a busy career and family, how do you find time for yourself?
AJ: You just give that up at a certain point. You even try to take a bath and everybody comes in, so you give up and that’s OK. As somebody who likes to be alone, I surprise myself that I’m very happy to be surrounded by everybody in my family. I feel that comfort.
How do you find yourself choosing projects at this point in your career?
AJ: It’s getting harder to make decisions to work for the sake of working. Like everybody, I’m trying to find things that are extremely challenging or mean something to me deeply. Sometimes something like The Tourist comes up and it’s just fun, but it’s not as easy to find projects that I have to do. I have to be home and I have to do other things, but I don’t have to work as much. That’s why I’m unemployed at the moment.
What was the best part of working with Johnny Depp?
He’s just such a nice guy. He’s so funny and so fun to hang out with. He’s just that friend you’re so happy to come to work and do scenes with. Plus, he’s such a brilliant actor. He’s often thought of so much for his deep character work, but it really comes from an artist who is willing to try things. He’s not just somebody who’s doing these fun [movies]; he’s a real experimental deeply feeling artist, who gives a lot and is very gracious on set to everybody and to his fellow actors. He’s just a pleasure.
The story is that you arrived early and got to look around Depp’s office while you waited for your first meeting with him. Was there something in particular there that made you think you’d get along well?
I was on time, for the record, I was not early. You walk into someone’s office and you see what’s important to them. He’s got lots of books and lots of pictures of his children. That’s immediately somebody you feel at ease with.
He’s very funny in this movie. Did he crack you up on set?
There’s some footage floating around, that I’m surprised hasn’t surfaced, of a good 15-20 minutes where we could not stop laughing. We wasted a lot of film. I got a lot of producers very frustrated because we just could not get through it.
Having just made your first movie as a director, what was that like and who did you draw inspiration from?
AJ: It’s a combination of quite a lot of directors. I learned a lot from Clint [Eastwood], who’s an extremely economic director. I learned a lot from Michael Winterbottom, who really gave a lot of trust in the actors and allowed them to live in the space instead of trying to manipulate and make it too set and too staged. Working with [Robert] De Niro taught me a lot of being an actors’ director and what that is. I’ve learned a lot from pretty much everybody. Hopefully I’ve picked up something from everybody I’ve worked with. I had such a wonderful experience being more with the crew. I think actors, because we’re in the world of the characters and the movie, are more isolated, and it was really fun to wake up and be a family with the entire crew. I was much more aware of the process and every different layer of it. I was really excited to watch other actresses work and do things that I maybe would have liked to try, but to see them be even better than I ever could have imagined. I wonder how it’s going to be when I go back to being an actor. It was really nice to be able to take the spotlight off myself and put it on some brilliant actors. I’m excited to show their work and their talent to the world because I’m very proud of what they gave and what they did. I felt lucky to be there for it.
King Fu Panda 2 is out next year; have you finished work on it?
AJ: I’ve done most of it, but I have a little bit more to do because it keeps changing. Jack Black goes in and improvises and I have to go back in and respond to it. I loved that first one and I think the themes are so beautiful. The next one gets into themes of adoption, which are obviously close to my heart, so I am very excited.
[From Pop Sugar]
So she drew her “girly” inspiration for the character from Vivienne? What about The Empress? She seems like a little lady too. Of course, in my mind, the Empress is also a hell raiser, so maybe not. I also like the director’s note of “slow down.”
In another interview with Reuters, Jolie talked about the criticism she’s received from a Bosnian women’s group, allegedly advocating on behalf of Bosnian rape victims. I don’t feel like going into the whole history of it, so just go here and here and here for a recap. Jolie tells Reuters, “There’s one person who has a gripe… The absolute majority of the people, population, the cast, prime minister, president have been extremely supportive.” She also said that “95 percent of the film’s cast had lived through the war” and that initially, she set out to write a screenplay about her frustrations over the slowness of the international community’s response to the genocide: “It kept leaning toward Yugoslavia at the time, I wanted to learn more about it and the people, the more I read and learnt I was drawn to that part of the world. I met artists from that part of the world and found they were extraordinary for what they’d gone through, so I wanted to give them a platform.”
Photos of Angelina in Paris on December 2, 2010. Credit: WENN.