Angelina Jolie, who plays the widow of murdered Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in a new pro-press freedom movie [A Mighty Heart], "turns out to be a mighty hypocrite when it comes to her own freedom of the press," writes [Fox News'] Roger Friedman. Her lawyer is requiring journalists to sign a contract before talking to her. Friedman says reporters from most major media outlets refused to sign the contract, which closely dictates the terms of all interviews with Jolie.Link. The notion that Hollywood reps would try to control how their client is portrayed in the press is hardly new. But if Friedman's allegations are true, [*if*, and he's reporting for Fox News, fwiw] -- that's pretty LOL when the actress/activist in question stars in a movie about censorship and press freedoms. This would also suggest that each of the big media outlets interviewing Jolie on the "Mighty Heart" launch circuit have signed away their obligation to act as news organizations, instead of self-censored movie promotion services. Wait, that's not new, either...
Update: ABC has more, and apparently Fox News was specifically banned from covering the movie premiere:
The press wasn't going to refrain from reporting on Jolie's attempt to manage it, Foxnews.com reported that both USA Today and The Associated Press canceled interviews with Jolie. She then scrapped print interviews altogether when she learned of their reaction.Reader comments: Thom says,
According to Fox, Jolie took her press wrangling one step further. She told Paramount Pictures, the company behind the film, to keep Fox News and all its affiliates off the red carpet. It was only after the Paramount staff intervened that a Fox camera crew was granted a spot. This after Fox called the film "excellent."
I fail to see the relevance of Ms. Jolie's interview rider to a freedom of the press issue. It is quite common for A-list stars to require a rider when they're doing junkets. Besides, interviewing an actor on a junket is hardly investigative journalism and the rider could not require the news organization to censor its reporting outside of the junket. Only to limit the kinds of questions asked during the interview, which is a promotional tool for the movie anyway.Jeff says,
Just because Ms. Jolie plays an advocate for press freedom in this movie doesn't make the other aspects of her job subject to the script of the movie. She's an actor. She's pretending to be an advocate for press freedom in this movie. That's her job, to be pretend to be someone she isn't. If she were portraying a Nazi we wouldn't expect her to be pro-nazi off the set.
I can't comment on her other activism. I simply think that it is silly for Friedman to call her a hypocrite for being a actor, and doing the things required of the profession. She is not the person she is protraying. He knows movies are pretend right?
Last night on The Daily Show, Jon Stewart asked Angelina Jolie about the controversy of alleged media contracts and access.
This link has a video clip of her response.
She basically said that it was done by her handlers to protect her but that the document did overreach and she wouldn't have authorized it herself. She did seem to indicate that she thought there was no coersion and no harm was done.
Boing Boing editor/partner and tech culture journalist Xeni Jardin hosts and produces Boing Boing's in-flight TV channel on Virgin America airlines (#10 on the dial), and writes about living with breast cancer. Diagnosed in 2011. @xeni on Twitter. email: email@example.com.