added: Mon, Feb 20th '17
Angelina Jolie's new film for Netflix is very much a family affair. The Oscar-winning actress, who is currently putting the final touches on her new directorial feature "First They Killed My Father," reveals in a new behind-the-scenes featurette that her young Cambodian-born teenage son, Maddox, had played an important part in the film's development.
"Maddox's been working on this [film] since the beginning," tells Jolie in the above clip. "He's in the production. He helped me with this script. And it isn't just because he's my son, it's because this film is [told] through the eyes of a child."
The Netflix drama was filmed in Maddox's home country of Cambodia, chronicling the 1970s genocidal campaign of Cambodian tyrant Pol Pot. The project is very close to Jolie's heart as it's based on the life of her dear friend of 15 years, Cambodian human-rights activist Loung Ung, who at the age of five was forced to flee her home when Pol Pot's deadly army, Khmer Rouge, took over the country in 1975. Also during that time, she was sent to a work camp where she was trained to be a child soldier. Ung wrote the harrowing account in her 2000 memoir, on which the film is based.
But the Netflix movie isn't just a story about one particular family. It's also about the country itself. "If you know nothing about Cambodia. And you see this film, you won't just think, these are people who suffered through a war," declares Jolie. "You will think, these are really interesting people. Their roots. Their personalities. Their humor. Their love of music, culture -- it's all of that. It has to be in the end, this love letter to the Cambodian people."
First They Killed My Father" will be released later in the year.
Cambodian author and human rights activist Loung Ung recounts the horrors she suffered under the rule of the deadly Khmer Rouge.
directed by Angelina Jolie
release date 2017 (on Netflix)