For years the media has accused Angelina Jolie of being many things; some of them nice…some not so nice. She has been called everything from “the Woman Who Stole Jennifer Aniston’s Man, to a Home Wrecking Hussy.” But six children later, the inamorata of Brad Pitt, has acquired many new titles including that of Director, Producer, Humanitarian and Philanthropist. With an impressive track record of film and international charitable campaigns that could rival those of Mother Teresa, many people no longer view Angelina Jolie, as the woman you love to hate.
Angelina Jolie has been acting since the early 1980’s, but she achieved ubiquitary fame in 2001, in her role as video game heroine Lara Croft in the movie Lara Croft – Tomb Raider. The success of Tomb Raider catapulted Jolie’s career and salary into the Hollywood stratosphere, earning Lara Croft a sequel: Lara Croft: The Cradle of Life.
Aside from her success as an award winning film actress, Angelina Jolie is gaining film industry panegyric for directing poignant films which deal with biting and haunting social issues. Her 2011 directorial debut of In the Land of Blood and Honey, won Jolie the Stanley Kramer Award. Her film, which depicts a love story between a Serbian soldier and a Bosniak POW during the Bosnian War, was filmed with as much authenticity as possible. In her effort not to diminish the veritableness of the film, Jolie used natural Yugoslavian actors who lived through the Bosnian War. To further set the film’s pace, the only languages spoken in the film were Serbo-Croatian-Bosnian. This earned Jolie a Golden Globe nomination for Best Foreign Language Film.
To her fans, Angelina Jolie is a talented actress with beautiful lips; to critics, nothing more than one who shoots provocative love scenes and tattoos her body. To others, she’s a humanitarian who mothers of a rainbow coalition of children; but one thing for certain, Angelina Jolie is a force to be reckoned with…in-and-out of Hollywood.
Angelina Jolie has garnered much recognition and praise for her humanitarian work. She is the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Goodwill Ambassador (UNHCR). She has been, and continues to be, a very focal ally in the fight against poverty and injustice. In a 2007 interview with ContactMusic, Jolie stated “I don’t want to act like the Mother Teresa of Hollywood. I quite simply want to help where there is poverty and destitution. Am I the only one who thinks and acts like that? “It became clear to me I was an incredibly privileged Hollywood star and I had to do something against the screaming injustice on this planet.”
Although she took a four-year hiatus from the silver screen, Jolie will return with a vengeance in the 2014 Disney release of “Maleficient.” Undoubtedly, some of us know the title character as the horned-villainess from the movie Sleeping Beauty. But others, like me, know her as the evil sorceress who made you afraid of things that go bump in the night.
To many, the name Angelina Jolie may still leave a bad taste in their mouth, to others, she may still be the woman they love to hate. But for those who look past-the-past, he is a gifted actress and humanitarian.
Welcome back, Angelina.
Written by: DeBorah Heggs-Alston