As they so often do, the worlds of politics and celebrity collided yesterday when President Obama met privately with Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt.
The famous couple was in Washington, D.C., to premiere Jolie's directorial debut of "In the Land of Blood and Honey" at the Holocaust Museum. The film, which revolves around a love story, is set against the backdrop of the Bosnian War.
Photographers waiting outside the White House for President Obama to leave for a trip to Chicago spied Pitt and Jolie through the Oval Office windows — blowing any cover the administration had hoped to keep on the visit. The White House later confirmed that the brief meeting took place, with Obama discussing Jolie's work to "raise the profile of preventing mass atrocities and combating sexual violence against women."
It's not the first time the president has met with celebrity activists. Back in late 2010, George Clooney visited Obama and lawmakers to brief them on the humanitarian crisis in the Sudan region. The 50-year-old is actively involved in monitoring the fragile situation there and raising global awareness to avoid further atrocities.
Jolie, 36, has been a UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador for more than a decade, actively using her fame and fortune to assist refugees and internally displaced persons in more than 30 countries.
“I never intended to direct. I always said I wouldn’t,” Jolie said of her new film. “After 10 years of traveling around the world and meeting with women who had been traumatized, I couldn’t get them out of my mind. I wondered about this question of intervention and what we should do. I wondered if I could do a piece that shows how war takes its toll and warps human beings, warps mothers and fathers and children and lovers. And I tried to make sense of it. And then Brad saw the screenplay, and said, ‘You know, this isn’t half bad — maybe you should show it to somebody.’”
Critics remain divided on the film — with reactions like L.A. Times' critic Sam Adams' "wishing it would end" to the Philadelphia Inquirer's Steven Rae calling it "impressively steady filmmaking."
The film has been nominated for a 2012 Golden Globe for "Best Foreign Language" movie. You can view a trailer below.