You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Angelina Jolie Talks ‘The Breadwinner’ at AIF Fest: Women’s Rights ‘Remain a Central Burning Issue’

The inaugural Animation is Film Festival supplied a family night of fun and culture on Friday at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatre in Hollywood.

Among the guests to arrive at the opening night and U.S. premiere of “The Breadwinner” was producer Angelina Jolie, with children Shiloh and Zahara in tow. Before the screening of the fest’s first premiere, Jolie-Pitt introduced the film she described to be “so exquisitely done and very important.”

The animated film is based on Deborah Ellis’ children’s novel of the same name, which follows a young girl in Afghanistan who disguises herself as a boy to provide for her family.

“There are few countries in the world where it is harder to be a young girl, where barriers between girls and their dreams and their rights are so high and so painful to experience and observe,” Jolie said, adding that the story was also able to highlight Afghanistan’s “deep humility, rich culture and a resilient warm people.”

She also thanked the crew and director Nora Twomey, who was seated in the crowd along with the voice actress of the film’s protagonist, Saara Chaudry

“It’s not just an Afghan story,” Jolie added. “It’s a story of our times and a story of a world in which equal rights for women remain a central burning issue of our time.”

A Q&A, featuring Twomey and Chaudry along with composers Mychael and Jeff Danna, followed the screening. Topics of discussion included the lengths production went to in order to make the story as authentic to Afghan culture as possible, as well as how the score and characters came together on screen.

GKids CEO Eric Beckman, who is also the festival founder and artistic director, welcomed the crowd of animation fans by sharing his mission to encourage filmmakers to grasp new technology.

“I have a theory that the best animated films have not been made yet,” Beckman stated.

Variety’s chief film critic Peter Debruge, who will chair the inaugural competition jury, also said a few words about the importance of celebrating animation as a medium.

“The reason we’re calling it ‘Animation is Film’ is, for whatever reason, no festival dedicated to animation exists in the U.S. that celebrates the medium in all its many facets,” Debruge said.

The Animation is Film Festival, presented by GKIDS, Annecy International Animation Film Festival, Variety and ASIFA-Hollywood, runs until Oct. 22 at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatre.

The Breadwinner” producer Angelina Jolie poses on the carpet with daughter Zahara Jolie-Pitt and star Saara Chaudry.
Rob Latour/Variety/REX/Shutterstock

More Scene

  • Laurie Metcalf, John Lithgow'Hillary and Clinton'

    Why John Lithgow Worried About Starring in Broadway's 'Hillary and Clinton'

    When Lucas Hnath first conceived of “Hillary and Clinton” in 2008, he was writing for and about a very different America. Now, a total reimagining of the show has made its way to Broadway with Laurie Metcalf and John Lithgow in the titular roles. At the opening on Thursday night, the cast and creatives talked [...]

  • Patrick Page, Amber Grey, Eva Noblezada,

    'Hadestown' Took 12 Years to Get to Broadway, but It's More Relevant Than Ever

    When “Hadestown” was first staged as a tiny, DIY theater project in Vermont, those involved could never have predicted that it was the start of a 12-year journey to Broadway — or how painfully relevant it would be when it arrived. At Wednesday night’s opening at the Walter Kerr Theatre, the cast and creatives discussed [...]

  • Mick Jagger

    Mick Jagger Makes First Post-Surgery Appearance at Rolling Stones Ballet Premiere

    Rock legend Mick Jagger made his first public appearance post-heart surgery on Thursday night to catch a glimpse of the world premiere of the Rolling Stones ballet “Porte Rouge.” “I hope you are going to enjoy this wonderful new ballet, and, of course, the music,” the frontman declared in a pre-recorded message to the audience [...]

  • Adam Driver appears at the curtain

    Adam Driver on Starring in 'Burn This' for a Second Time

    The Hudson Theatre’s new production of “Burn This” marks its first Broadway revival since it premiered on the Great White Way in 1987, but Adam Driver is no stranger to the work. He starred as Pale in a Juilliard production of the Lanford Wilson drama when he was still a student — and only now, [...]

  • PMC Event Rome

    Film, Fashion, Formula E Mix at Rome E-Prix Bash

    Film, fashion and Formula E auto-racing fused during a dinner and celebration of the Rome E-Prix on Thursday at the Palazzo Dama by the Piazza del Popolo in the heart of the Eternal City.  Guests mingled and sipped cocktails as hors d’oeuvres were passed around in a former home of the Italian nobility with conversation [...]

  • Katy Perry, Diane von Furstenberg, Arianna

    Katy Perry and Anita Hill Honored at the DVF Awards

    Katy Perry was among the honorees at the 10th Annual DVF Awards on Thursday night. The singer was recognized for her advocacy work with both UNICEF and the LGBTQ community. “Music has opened the doors for so many opportunities for me,” she said while accepting the inspiration award. “The ability to meet people and champion [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content