Date of Birth: June 4, 1975.
Place of Birth: Los Angeles, Calif.
Sign: Sun in Gemini, Moon in Aries.
Relations: Father: Jon Voight (actor); mother: Marcheline Bertrand (former actress); brother: James Haven Voight (director); husband: Billy Bob Thornton (actor, director, writer); ex-husband: Jonny Lee Miller (actor).
Education: Attended Lee Strasberg Theater Institute and New York University (majored in film).
WITH HER LONG legs, ample bee-stung lips and striking deep-set blue eyes, Angelina Jolie may have been destined for screen stardom even without
benefit of talent or family name, both of which are considerable, but
these attributes didn't hurt.
Born Angelina Jolie Voight, which translated means “pretty little angel eyes” on June 4, 1975, in Los Angeles, California.
Her father, actor Jon Voight—best known for Midnight Cowboy and Coming Home, for which he won an Oscar—separated from her mother, the former model/actress Marcheline Bertrand, when Jolie was just a year old. Raised by her mother along with her older brother, James Haven, in Palisades, New York, Jolie made her feature film debut with a bit role in the poorly received 1982 film Lookin’ to Get Out, co-produced and co-written by Voight, who also starred in the movie.
Jolie began formally studying acting at the renowned Lee Strasberg Theater Institute in New York City at age 11.
Five years later, she began living on her own, working as a professional model and appearing in music videos for artists including the Rolling Stones, Lenny Kravitz, Meat Loaf, and the Lemonheads. Moving back to Los Angeles, Jolie acted in several student films directed by her brother, who was then attending the University of Southern California film school. She also joined the Met Theater Group and performed alongside fellow members like Ed Harris and Holly Hunter.
After a couple forgettable films (including the direct-to-video Cyborg II: Glass Shadows), Jolie landed her first starring role in the 1995 cyber-thriller Hackers. Though the film met with a generally poor reception, Jolie earned praise for her performance; she also fell in love with co-star Jonny Lee Miller. At the couple’s wedding ceremony in March 1996, the unconventional bride wore black rubber pants and a shirt on which she had written the groom’s name in her own blood. Jolie and Miller separated less than a year later; they were divorced in 1999.
Over the next several years, Jolie’s reputation as Hollywood’s newest “bad girl” grew steadily, even as a number of highly acclaimed performances established her as a talented A-list actress. In 1997, she earned an Emmy nomination and a Golden Globe Award for her supporting turn in the TNT biopic George Wallace, starring Gary Sinise. She achieved the same feats—this time as Best Actress—the following year, for her emotionally-charged performance at the center of HBO’s Gia, based on the true story of Gia Carangi, a rebellious, heroin-addicted model who died of AIDS in the mid-1980s.
On the big screen, Jolie initially had less success, starring in several poorly received films, most notably Foxfire and Playing God, co-starring Timothy Hutton and David Duchovny. She had more luck with the ensemble comedy-drama Playing By Heart, appearing alongside such heavy-hitters as Sean Connery and Gena Rowlands. In 1999, Jolie appeared in three major films: the disappointing comedy Pushing Tin, co-starring John Cusack, Billy Bob Thornton, and Cate Blanchett; The Bone Collector, a thriller co-starring Denzel Washington; and Girl, Interrupted, co-starring Winona Ryder. In the latter film, Jolie’s performance as Lisa, a charismatic sociopathic inmate in a psychiatric hospital, earned her rave reviews, a third straight Golden Globe, and an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.
This year, Jolie stared with Nicolas Cage in the action-packed Gone in Sixty Seconds and with Antonio Banderas in the period drama Dancing in the Dark.
After her divorce from Miller, Jolie was romantically linked to her Playing God co-star and veteran “bad boy” Hutton; they reportedly broke up in 1999. In the spring of 2000, she began dating her Pushing Tin co-star and fellow Oscar winner (Best Adapted Screenplay for 1997's Sling Blade) Thornton.
Thornton’s fiancé at the time found out about his indiscretion through the tabloids. But the worst was when his girlfriend, Jolie, walked around with a tattoo of her boyfriends name on her arm. Jolie and Thornton wed (she for the second time, he for the fifth) on May 5, 2000, in Las Vegas.
2000 Gone in 60 Seconds
1999 Pushing Tin
1999 The Bone Collector
1999 Girl, Interrupted
1998 Hell's Kitchen
1998 Playing by Heart
1997 Playing God
1996 Love Is All There Is
1996 Mojave Moon
1993 Cyborg 2: Glass Shadow
1997 George Wallace
1997 True Women.
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)