Angelina Jolie Worried About Being "Right Person" to Direct 'First They Killed My Father' | Director Roundtable
"I want this country to speak, but did I feel I had the right to be the one doing that?" Jolie said of making the film.
"When you direct, it's going to be years of your life. I think you're only going to be doing it well if you need to do it, and you need to do it well," Angelina Jolie said of her latest film, First They Killed My Father during The Hollywood Reporter's Director Roundtable.
"In Cambodia, this is a subject matter that has been debated. This history is not known. Internationally, it's not known. It's something that has made me upset when I was in the country. I've seen how it affects the people, and I have a son who deserves to know his history," Jolie told the table while articulating her need to make the Cambodian-based historical feature. Jolie adopted her eldest son Maddox Jolie-Pitt from Cambodia in 2002. At the age of 16, Jolie-Pitt served as a producer on his mother's film.
"I want this country to speak, but did I feel I had the right to be the one doing that? It was hard every day to know if I was good enough or the right person to do it," Jolie said of making the film, which earned a Golden Globe nomination for best foreign film on Monday.
I felt so honored to be welcomed into another country," Jolie said of Cambodia, "and to witness, and bear witness, and encourage, and share, and really put forward their history."
Jolie began her career as an actress, winning a best supporting actress Oscar for her work in Girl, Interrupted and a best actress nomination for Changeling before her first feature narrative work as a director, In the Land of Blood and Honey. First They Killed My Father marks Jolie's first major recognition for her directorial work.
The full Director Roundtable also features Guillermo del Toro, Denis Villeneuve, Greta Gerwig, Joe Wright and Patty Jenkins, and airs on SundanceTV, Sunday, Jan. 21. Tune in to THR.com/roundtables for more roundtables featuring talent from the year’s top films.