Angelina Jolie revealed she deeply resonated with her troubled character, Hannah Faber, in the upcoming thriller Those Who Wish Me Dead.
“I am drawn to people who have been through something and are broken and then find their way forward and overcome it,” the actress, 45, told Entertainment Tonight about the movie hitting theaters and streaming via HBO Max on May 14. “As an artist, it’s very healing to play people like that. She’s been very healing for me, because you just get so broken and then you stand back up.”
Angelina said the role reminded her how hard it can be to overcome some obstacles amid her divorce drama with ex Brad Pitt, 57.
In the movie, Hannah’s struggles with PTSD and regret from past decisions come to light as she tries to protect a 12-year-old boy, who witnessed a murder. To get prepared for her role in the action-packed flick, Angelina trained four days a week. The humanitarian also performed many of her own stunts on set.
“On its surface, it feels like a great thriller, a great adventure across an unusual terrain inside a great fire,” the filmmaker explained. “Underneath it, it’s a really emotional film. It’s about people who have a great impact on each other and change each other. Emotionally and practically, they go through the fire.”
Similar to her character, the actress has learned to find strength through hardships. After her divorce filing in 2016, Angelina and Brad have been in an ongoing custody battle. The exes were declared legally single in April 2019, but their divorce has yet to be finalized. In March 2021, Angelina filed new court documents claiming she has “proof” of alleged domestic violence against him.
“When they were first divorced in the fall of 2016 … she made similar allegations (about what happened on their plane ride back to the U.S. ) which were reported to the authorities and thoroughly investigated before no action was taken,” a source familiar with the case told In Touch in the actor’s defense.
Brad previously sought out “50/50 physical and legal custody” of their children in September 2020, an insider told Us Weekly at the time about their coparenting arrangement.
The exes share six kids together: Maddox, 19, Pax, 17, and Zahara, 16, Shiloh, 14, as well as twins, Knox and Vivienne, 12, and it appears they both want to put the children first at the end of the day.
Just last week, Angelina revealed she paused her directing work to be more present with their children. “I love directing, but I had a change in my family situation that’s not made it possible for me to direct for a few years,” she previously told the outlet. “I needed to just do shorter jobs and be home more, so I kind of went back to doing a few acting jobs. That’s really the truth of it.”
In recent years, Maddox and Brad have dealt with some of their own father-son disagreements amid the divorce drama, but the Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood star “hasn’t given up hope” on their relationship, an insider previously told In Touch. “Brad loves Maddox and will always be there for him and his siblings.”
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