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Angelina Jolie Biography   

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Angelina Jolie Biography

"Acting is not pretending or lying. It's finding a side of yourself that's the character, and ignoring your other sides.  And there's a side of me that wonders what's wrong with being completely honest."

-Angelina Jolie

This is how Angelina confronts acting. She is no stranger to the art as both her parents were actors.  Her mother is actress Mircheline Bertrand and her father, Oscar-winning actor Jon Voight.  Her father, although not entirely unbiased, had said in an interview: "Just look at the beautiful face and all the intelligence that it has and all the passion. It's quite extraordinary".

However Angelina is indeed quite extraordinary; she had made her first screen debut at the age of five, alongside her father in the Hal Ashby-directed comedy "Looking to Get Out" a very obscure film mirroring the very young and still obscure Angelina.

At the age of 11 she begun studying acting at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute.  During her time there she staged numerous productions although she was also flirting with the idea of becoming a funeral director. She says: "There's something about death that is comforting. The thought you could die tomorrow frees you to appreciate your life now".

Age 16 she struck out on her own by finding work as a professional model in London, New York and Los Angeles and appearing in music videos for the likes of Meatloaf, the Lemonheads, Lenny Kravitz and the Rolling Stones.

However her love for acting and theatre brought her back to New York where she followed film studies before moving to Los Angeles to study acting in a more formalized setting at the Met Theatre Group amongst esteemed actors such as Ed Harris and Holly Hunter.

Her inner search continued.. "I didn't know exactly what I wanted, but I knew I could know". Angelina insists it was her mother, who had influenced her: "She loved taking us to the theatre".  She also explained her rekindled interest in theatrics: "I loved some kind of expression. I want[ed] so much to try to explain things to somebody.. I'm very good at trying to explore different emotions and listen to people and feel things.  That is an actor I think".

Her first film was, to be put mildly, unremarkable; a supporting role as a human- machine hybrid in the 1993 "Cyborg II: Glass Shadows".

However her second film and first lead role in 1995 could be described as a milestone for her, not only because she got recognition in the film industry, but also because the venture put her in the company of free-spirited British actor, Lonny Lee Miller.  After a brief courtship, the co-stars got married. Angelina ignored the customary white wedding dress and made a statement by wearing black rubber pants and a shirt that had inscribed across it, in blood, the groom's name.

More films followed, such as the 1996 "Legs" a very dynamic and powerful adaptation of the Joyce Card Oates novel "Foxfire". Also in 1996 "Love in all there is" and in 1997 she starred in "Playing God" alongside David Duchovny.

Her animated portrayal of Cornelia Wallace in the 1997 TV movie "George Wallace" garnered her a Best supporting Actress Golden Globe and an Emmy nomination.

But her stardom was truly set ablaze by another electrifying portrayal, this time as the drug-addicted AIDS-afflicted model Gia Cavangi in the 1998 HBO production "Gia". "Gia" netted her a second Golden Globe statuette and another Emmy nomination.

As an acclaimed actress the offers for more challenging roles came flooding in. In 1999 she co-starred with Billy Bob Thornton (her second husband) in the comedy "Pushing Tin" and in the same year she tackled a headline role in "The Bone Collector" alongside Denzel Washington.

Angelina pushed emotional, physical and mental boundaries to the limits in her strong turn as a seductive sociopath in "Girl, Interrupted" - a starring vehicle for Winona Ryder - that was based on author Susanna Kaysen's best selling account of her own two-year confinement in a psychiatric hospital.  Perhaps not surprisingly Jolie's full-tilt performance in the coveted supporting role was rewarded with a Golden Globe, not to mention a Best Supporting Actress Oscar.

By 2000, Angelina Jolie had three Golden Globes and an academy Award on the mantelpiece. On May 5th, that same year, Jolie married actor Billy Bod Thornton; a marriage that ended however in divorce in 2003. During that time Angelina Jolie Voight made big headlines again with news about her transformation to the highly conspicuous Lara Croft in "Tomb Raider, the Movie".

Films like "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow", "Alexander" and "Mr. & Mrs. Smith" make big headlines in 2004-2005 and remind us why we love Angelina. During filming of the latter she met actor Brad Pitt and the two started dating. It was rumored that they finally tied the knot in November 2005 with a secret Buddhist ceremony; Angelina is a devout Buddhist. However this rumor was later denied by Brad. Then in January 2006 it was revealed that Angelina is carrying Brad's child. Time will show what the future holds for the couple.

Jolie has also been a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees since 2001. She is very committed in helping others and frequently travels to Third World countries in order to bring media attention to the problems of the Third World.

Marianna P. for,
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