Saturday 10 December 2016

'Brad and I have our issues ... we can drive each other mad': Angelina's revealing 2015 interview

John Hiscock

Published 21/09/2016 | 07:00

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in a scene from 'By the Sea'. (Universal Pictures via AP, File)

The news that Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are to divorce has shocked the world of showbusiness.

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But, in an extraordinarily candid interview first published in November 2015, the actress talked frankly about the tensions in her marriage and what inspired her to make her last film, 'By the Sea', which chronicles the arguments between a warring couple. Here is part of that interview:

I​t seemed like a good idea at first: the newly married Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt thought they would combine filming 'By the Sea' on location in Malta with their honeymoon. But it didn't work out quite as they had planned.

"There were a few days when we thought (a working honeymoon) wasn't the best idea," laughs Jolie, who wrote, directed, produced and co-starred with Pitt in the low-budget domestic drama. "There were days during filming when we were really worried and it was hard.

"If we had married and were just starting a relationship it would have been a disaster, but because we have been together so long we wanted to see how far we could push our relationship and our love and see if we can work together under very intense circumstances and with very complex issues and see if it would make us better.

"But at the end we came out of it thinking, 'This was the best honeymoon,' because the film says, 'Whatever you go through, weather the storm and stick together.'

"So it was kind of a message to each other that we are going to stick together whatever comes."

'By the Sea' tells the story of Jolie's Vanessa, a depressed former dancer and her heavy drinking novelist husband (Pitt) who arrive in a seaside town in 1970s France with their marriage in crisis.

As they meet fellow travellers and local residents, they begin to examine their problems and start to come to terms with unresolved issues in their lives.

Jolie insists the story is in no way autobiographical - for years, tabloid newspapers and magazines ran reports claiming the couple were on the verge of splitting up, right up until the point they tied the knot at their château in the south of France last August.

"Brad and I have our issues, but if the characters were even remotely close to our problems we couldn't have made the film. To be clear: we have fights and problems like any other couple. We have days when we drive each other absolutely mad and want space, but the problems in the movie aren't our specific problems."

It is the first time Jolie and Pitt have worked together since the 2005 action-comedy 'Mr and Mrs Smith', the movie on which they met.

"When we first worked together it was very different because we didn't really know each other and we were young and, it was really a fun film, so we thought, maybe 'By the Sea' was going to be that kind of fun, but realised very quickly that it wasn't," she said. "Then we joked that this is what happens after 10 years of marriage."

Directing her husband was not always easy and they had to make a pact with each other. "Our first few days were quite tricky because no matter what I say, he knows me so well and knows every little gesture when I get impatient, or when I am not really happy," she said.

"And I was nervous about not being able to have the right direction for him, to see him stuck and not being able to push him. So it was challenging, but we made a private pact that we were going to try to be as open and honest and emotive as possible and give to each other as much as we could and, succeed or fail, we would just lay it bare."

'By the Sea' is the first, and could be the last, time she has directed herself in a movie.

"That was the most challenging part of it because you tend to take care of everybody and don't give yourself the right attention and you don't have somebody telling you it's good enough, or checking on you," Jolie said.

"But I love directing and I would love to be allowed to do more films. Most of my films are based on a history that's important to me. I don't have the same connection with 'By the Sea', although it's important because humanity in life is important. But I think I am more comfortable making war films, to be honest."

She pauses for a moment, then says: "Not that marriage can't be a little bit like that." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk

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