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Brad Pitt – Digging Deep into the Pitt

There are few in the movie game who can ‘out-Pitt’ Brad Pitt, but the film icon may well have met his match in the forthcoming film Ad Astra.

In the James Gray-directed release, tipped to be one of the biggest of the year, the on/off partner to Angelina Jolie stars alongside Tommy Lee Jones, who plays his on-screen father. And if that wasn’t enough, consider Donald Sutherland strolling in stage-right too. It’s a stellar cast that can comfortably deal with a storyline that weaves sci-fi into family into a whodunnit.

For Pitt though, the film marks another milestone – not only is he now beyond the 30-mark for movies he has produced, but at 56, the American admits his perspective on life has changed… and for the better.

First inspired to talk about the disparity of wealth in modern-day America when making the film The Big Short, Brad Pitt’s plight now stretches far beyond the confines of the world’s most powerful country. “I have found that as I’ve gotten older I feel much more protective of my fellow human being, no matter where they live,” he says. “It’s common for people of my age to realise they have achieved a fair amount, are content, are probably more secure financially now the kids are close to leaving home or have left, and can look on the plight of others with a little more sympathy.

“That has definitely been the case for me, and it has inspired me to try to make change so that we might begin to level the playing field, even if that is just a little.”

Pitt admits the best way to affect change is to push it forward. “I used to be someone who would look back over decisions and actions, but life really is too short for that, and now I am just in the mode of trying to make positive change with my next move, and in any way I can.

“In recent years I’ve really become aware of the fact that life a constant evolution – that’s definitely one of the great benefits of getting older,” he continues. “For me, that whole shift really started when I became a father, and you learn so much about being that person, about being there for your kids, about helping them grow and discover the world. Once I understood that, all of the uncertain of who you are kind of ebbs away.”

When asked if he feels the effects of the advancing years, Pitt is quick to shut down the suggestion. “I think everyone knows what happens when you get older, but in today’s generation the acceptance of age is actually a very healthy thing.

“When I was people – adults – just didn’t talk about their feelings like they do now. Everyone was expected to be strong and self-disciplined – you didn’t show weakness and you didn’t talk about problems or complain about feeling frustrated or sad. You kept that bottled up!”

Pitt admits, because of the conditions he was made to subscribe to as a kid, he does still have difficulty articulating and expressing himself… “although I’ve gotten better at it lately,” he laughs. “I guess age is wearing down my protective armour, just as it does a lot of people!

“As time goes on we know more about the consequences of our actions, and most of the time we come to realise that our actions are largely trivial.

“I tell myself and I tell others… stop fretting and get on with the next day. We owe that to ourselves.”

 

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Violet Wilder

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