The Might Heart (2007) shoot in Mumbai isn’t a memory they cherish given the controversy that surrounded it, but buzz is that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are planning another visit to India, a quiet three-day trip to Rajasthan.
The Hollywood superstar doesn’t confirm or deny the rumour, all he says is, “I’ve never seen a country like India; it was an extraordinary trip. And we absolutely loved Deepavali, the Indian festival of lights.”
Brad’s new movie, Tree Of Life, after missing release dates in 2009 and 2010, will be opening in India this Friday. Rave reviews and the Palme d’Or at Cannes make the film a strong contender for the Oscars next year. Having put his money into it, how confident is Brad of the film’s commercial prospects in India?
Recalling the circumstances that prompted the decision, Brad says that one of the unfortunate things about show business is that sometimes great stories face a lot of difficulties getting made, even when people like director Terrence Malick are involved.
“We’ve seen strong scripts fall by the wayside and wanted to ensure that this one did not. I was already on board as a producer so I jumped in, even though I was a little hesitant about playing an oppressive father.
And today, everything I do, I look at in the context of what my kids are going to see and feel. They know me as a dad, but I hope that some day they will think of me as a damn good actor too,” he says.
From being a ‘pretty boy’ Brad has emerged as an ‘actor of substance’ and remembers that 10 years ago when he was reflecting upon his favourite films, he realised they weren’t the commercial biggies, but movies with depth, that raised bigger questions or were funny. “There’s some great comedy coming out of America right now,” he says.
Tree of Life is not a laugh riot, but a film about loss, life and memories. And Brad admits that he was brought up constantly being told that things happened the way God had planned. Even when they didn’t work out, it was because of ‘God’s plan’.
“I had my issues with this and found it stifling,” he says.
Interestingly, despite his resigned submission, Brad knows one has to deal with problems: “You powered through them, straight up the middle and didn’t complain. It helped me deal with stardom later.”
Today, Brad himself is a father. He ensures his kids brush their teeth and eat breakfast. And he’s there if they ever have a bad dream.
“Angie (Angelina Jolie) and I do everything we can to carve some semblance of normalcy for our children and recreate moments that were special for us when we were growing up. It’s not unusual for them to be covered in paint and they enjoy mud fights too,” he laughs.
“It’s chaos from morning until the lights go out, and sometimes even after that.”
When asked if there were any chances of Angelina and him doing a film together soon, he says, “We’re not ones to repeat ourselves. We’d like to, but right now, we’re hop-scotching with films so one of us can be with the kids while the other’s free to work.”