If you’re panicking now at the mere thought of Christmas and the logistical nightmare it entails, spare a thought for the Hollywood juggernaut that is the Jolie-Pitt family.
The annual whirlwind of last-minute shopping, gift wrapping, not to mention delayed flights, snow storms, airplane baggage restrictions, is enough to raise the blood pressure of even the most stoic to critical levels. I suppose that’s what makes Christmas Eve all the more enjoyable when you finally sit down with family in friends, eggnog in hand, and breathe a great big sigh of relief.
One has to wonder how Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie do it. Hollywood’s royal couple are as prolific in their creative output as they are with their propagation of the human race. With three adopted children, Maddox, Pax, and Zahara, and three biological children, Shiloh, Knox, and Vivienne, ranging in ages from 3 to 10 years old, Christmas morning in the Jolie-Pitt household is as likely to resemble a scene from Pitts up and coming post-apocalyptic horror zombie film World War Z.
But do it they do and as always with style and grace under pressure. This year saw Pitt hit the screens with the long awaited arrival of Terrence Malick’s highly emotional family drama The Tree Of Life as well as critically acclaimed but underperforming baseball-redemption flick Moneyball. He is probably the most bankable and in-demand male lead actors in the business but in recent years has been steadily moving his energy and considerable resources into the field of film production with his company Plan B. Having already notched up Producer’s credits on films such as Troy and The Departed, his company is also responsible for getting Charlie and the Chocolate Factory made as well as The Tree of Life, Eat, Pray, Love and Kick-Ass, as well as Cogan’s Trade and World War Z, both of which he stars in. Steve Mc Queen’s latest cinematic exploration will be 12 Years a Slave based on the book by Solomon Northrup and is in preproduction with Brad Pitt and Michael Fassbender on board.
Brad Pitt wears glasses by Dolce&Gabbana Eyewear
World War Z, which has already wrapped, is based on the Max Brookes book of the same name. The book reads as a UN report on ‘The Zombie Wars’ and follows the fortunes of a single main character Gary Lane, played by Brad Pitt. The current zombie wave sweeping modern culture is highly contagious and it seem the public can’t get enough “brains”. This picture promises to be more than your usual walking dead horror flick and promises to be a genre-defining artwork that could transcend the limitations of the zombie movie. Expect your local cinema to be taken over by World War Z in December 2012.
Jolie, on the other hand, won’t be outdone by her partner and is busy on the media trail promoting her directorial debut The Land of Blood and Honey a film she also wrote. She doesn’t shy away from challenging material as the film explores a relationship between a Serbian soldier and a Bosnian prisoner of War during the Bosnian War. The film was shot in Budapest and Esztergom and used local actors, many of whom had direct experience of the war and even incorporating their experiences into the film.
Angelina Jolie in lace, Dolce&Gabbana SS12 Women's
As if they hadn’t enough on their plates with two of the most successful careers in Hollywood as well as their Von Trapp-sized intercultural, intercontinental family, the Jolie Pitts still find the time to squeeze in an impressive list of humanitarian work in aid of those less fortunate. Jolie is a UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador since 2001 and has travelled the globe to war-torn areas to highlight the suffering of ordinary people. This year alone saw her return to Afghanistan and visit Libya during the rebellion. Both Pitt and Jolie have been heavily involved in humanitarian work from Chad and Sudan to Burma and Haiti as well as causes on US soil such as the rebuilding of New Orleans.
And you thought you were busy? Pitt has a keen interest in architecture and especially in sustainability and the environment and has completed an informal internship in architectural firm. He is the proud owner of probably the most famous mid-riff and abdominal muscles in the world. Those abs just don’t look after themselves, they’re a full-time gig in all on their own, they even have their own agent. And he still finds time to squeeze in rounds of golf with Obama.
It’s small wonder that this year, Pitt shocked the world when he announced he would be retiring from acting in 3 years when he’s 50. But we doubt very much you’ll see this man anywhere near a hammock as he plans to put himself into production on a full-time basis.
So for now one wonders how the Jolie-Pitt family will fit Christmas into their peripatetic lifestyle – it sort of puts my own Christmas obligations into perspective. In fact I wouldn’t be surprised if this superhuman couple actually found the time not only to celebrate, but to save Christmas as well.
by Hugo Mc Cafferty