Angelina Jolie gives rare insight into her relationship with ‘complex’ daughter Vivienne

Angelina Jolie gives rare insight into her relationship with ‘complex’ daughter Vivienne

Angelina Jolie has given a rare insight into her close relationship with her 15-year-old daughter, Vivienne.

The 49-year-old actor recently praised her teenage daughter, whom she had collaborated with during the production of the Broadway musical, The Outsiders. Jolie served as producer on the musical, while Vivienne worked as her assistant.

In an interview with Deadline published on 10 June, the Maleficent star praised Vivienne and explained how she was the one who inspired her to become involved in the project. Speaking to the outlet, Jolie shared that Vivienne attended several stage productions of The Outsiders at La Jolla Playhouse in San Diego, California – before the show moved to Broadway – and finally convinced her mother to attend a show.

“My daughter Viv loves theater. She appreciates all theater but she certainly knows what she feels close to and what she responds to. She went to see The Outsiders at La Jolla about five times and was telling me about it, and I had read the book, and I’d seen the film years ago,” Jolie said.

The Outsiders musical, based on the 1967 SE Hinton novel of the same name and Francis Ford Coppola’s 1983 film adaptation, follows the same story of 14-year-old Ponyboy Curtis and two rival gangs in rural Oklahoma. The stage production, directed by Danya Taymor, received 12 Tony Awards following its move to Broadway last April.

The mother of six said it was “important” for her to understand why her daughter had enjoyed the coming-of-age story so much, and witness firsthand “the effect it was having on my young daughter”.

“I was learning what about it was important to her and why it connected so deeply to her,” Jolie said.

The Oscar-winning actor immediately became involved as a producer with her daughter by her side, as they offered creative notes and suggestions for the cast and crew of the Broadway show. When asked exactly what it was about The Outsiders that resonated with Vivienne so much, Jolie reportedly let out a laugh.

Angelina Jolie attends ‘Eternals’ premiere in Los Angeles with children Maddox, Vivienne, Zahara, Shiloh and Knox on 18 October 2021 (Getty Images for Disney)
Angelina Jolie attends ‘Eternals’ premiere in Los Angeles with children Maddox, Vivienne, Zahara, Shiloh and Knox on 18 October 2021 (Getty Images for Disney)

“Oh, it’s hard to speak for her, because she’s a complex young woman,” she admitted. “I think it’s just that it’s very deep, and it’s honest, and it doesn’t shy away from real feelings and real discussion and real pain. I think maybe every person that watches it might identify slightly more with one character or another, right, but what I think you see through it all is there is pain in life, right? There is fear. There is, ‘Who am I and where do I belong?’ There is, ‘Why are these people marginalized and harmed more than others? Why do these people kill themselves? What is it we’re facing in life?’

“I think a lot of young people, especially today, these are very difficult times, and they want to have that real discussion, and they want to know what helps you get through life.”

In addition to Vivienne, Jolie shares five other children with her ex-husband, Brad Pitt: Maddox, 22, Pax, 20, Zahara, 19, Shiloh, 18, and Knox, also 15. The Girl, Interrupted star’s gushing comments about Vivienne come amid much speculation about Pitt’s reported estrangement from his children.

Last month, People reported that the 15-year-old was listed as Vivienne Jolie, rather than Jolie-Pitt, in the Playbill program for The Outsiders on Broadway. While it was unclear if Vivienne’s name change was a legal adjustment or a professional choice, her older sister Shiloh legally requested to drop “Pitt” from her last name on the day she turned 18, according to documents obtained by TMZ.

Meanwhile, a viral video previously revealed that Zahara was introduced by her university’s sorority as Zahara Marley Jolie – also excluding her father’s last name.

There have been many reports of a strained relationship between Pitt and his children following the former couple’s split in 2016 – after two years of marriage and 12 years together. Jolie is said to have filed for divorce after an incident that occurred on a private flight from France to Los Angeles in September that year.

The court filings, which were obtained by The New York Times, claimed that Pitt “choked one of the children and struck another in the face” and “grabbed Jolie by the head and shook her”. The filing also stated that, at one point, “he poured beer on Jolie; at another, he poured beer and red wine on the children”.

Representatives for Pitt refuted the allegations as “completely untrue”, while his lawyer Anne Kiley said that Pitt had been on the receiving end of “every type of personal attack and misrepresentation” but would not “own anything he didn’t do”.

“Brad will continue to respond in court as he has consistently done,” Kiley said.