Tuesday 27 September 2016

Angelina Jolie Pitt's six children learning seven languages

Published 17/06/2016 | 00:06

Angelina Jolie Pitt said her children were keen to learn languages
Angelina Jolie Pitt said her children were keen to learn languages

Angelina Jolie Pitt has revealed her six children are learning a total of seven languages between them, including Arabic, Russian and sign language.

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The 41-year-old actress has three children, Shiloh, 10, and twins Vivienne and Knox, seven, with husband Brad Pitt, and has adopted Maddox, 14, from Cambodia, Pax, 12, from Vietnam, and Zahara, 11, from Ethiopia.

She is the final guest-editor of BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour Takeover week, and revealed during her interview that none of her children were interested in acting but all had a penchant for languages.

She said: "I asked them what languages they wanted to learn and (Shiloh)'s learning Khmer, which is the Cambodian language, Pax is focusing on Vietnamese, Mad has taken to German and Russian, (Zahara)'s speaking French, Vivienne really wanted to learn Arabic and Knox is learning sign language."

The Unbroken director's next film is an adaptation of Cambodian author Loung Ung's memoirs, First They Killed My Father, about her survival under Pol Pot's regime.

She revealed it was son Maddox, who was adopted in 2002 at seven-months-old from an orphanage in Battambang, who persuaded her to do the film.

She said: "We'd done this screenplay and put it aside and it was Mad who came up to me and said it was time to do that film and learn about the history of his country, and he wanted to do it and go there and understand it."

She also admitted that she asked friend Ung for her opinion on adopting Maddox.

She said: "I'd read her book and ... I said to her, 'I'm thinking of adopting from this country. As an orphan yourself would you be offended or would you be supportive? Would that be all right?'

"She was very supportive and months later she met Mad and has been in his life ever since."

Jolie Pitt said her children had asked to meet refugees and that they were considered "heroes" in her house

Speaking about her children who came from conflict zones, she said: "I never want them to meet these people and look at them with pity or feel that it's a responsibility."

She admitted she "probably wouldn't have made it this far" if she had been a refugee because her wealth allowed her to afford an ultrasound when she gave birth to daughter Shiloh in Namibia in 2006.

She required a C-section and said other women "might not have survived" the complication.

:: Jolie Pitt spoke ahead of World Refugee Day on June 20. Listen to her Woman's Hour Takeover on Friday June 17 at 10am on BBC Radio 4.

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