You may remember the exchanges between producer Scott Rudin and Sony Pictures Entertainment co-chairman Amy Pascal, discussing the idea of Angelina Jolie wanting David Fincher to direct her in a "Cleopatra" movie.
Gawker has a full breakdown, but at one point Rudin wrote to Pascal, "There is no movie of Cleopatra to be made (and how that is a bad thing given the insanity and rampaging ego of this woman and the cost of the movie is beyond me)." He added later, to the same e-mail, "I have zero appetite for the indulgence of spoiled brats and I will tell her this myself if you don't." In another e-mail, Rudin wrote of Jolie, "I'm not destroying my career over a minimally talented spoiled brat who thought nothing of shoving this off her plate for eighteen months so she could go direct a movie. [...] She's a camp event and a celebrity and that's all and the last thing anybody needs is to make a giant bomb with her that any fool could see coming." Yikes.
So the NY Times asked Angelina Jolie if she was surprised when she read "the bruising exchange" about her between Amy Pascal and Scott Rudin. Jolie said she didn't real the emails, but she knew what was in them. Here's her response:
Someone told me. There are certain things that bother me and certain things that don't. Personal attacks on me? I think I'm just so used to it. Honestly, my first instinct was that I was worried about Amy. I had someone call her and ask if she was O.K. Not because I'm a saint, but because I think we have to look at the bigger picture. She's got kids. I knew it was going to unravel for her."
That's a classy reaction, but considering most of the vitriol was from Scott Rudin, it's not too shocking to see her take the high road. It's also in keeping with her aim to stay positive instead of negative, when it comes to everything, including gender discrimination in Hollywood. As she put it at one point in the Times interview:
I just think that sometimes people in the business focus on the fact that you're a minority. I don't want people saying, "Should we get a female director?" I want to hear, "Should we get a great director for this movie?" But I'm the first female director that Brad's ever worked with. That doesn't seem right when you think about it. [...] Sexism is part of every industry and must be addressed. But I try not to focus on the negative but the positive side of what we can bring. I want to support other women because of the opportunities I've had — and I've had a lot of opportunities. What I try as a female director is to do the best job I can and in the meantime bring attention to as many other female directors and writers as I can. Right now I am producing "The Breadwinner," an animated film about Afghanistan. Nora Twomey is the director."
Good for her. Considering all she's accomplished on- and especially off-screen, "spoiled brat" seems like the least apt description.
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