by Apostle Gabriel Cross Here’s a Bible passage, I’d like to share with you, Isaiah 54:17: But no weapon that is formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against you in judgment you shall show to be in the wrong. This [peace, righteousness, security, triumph over opposition] is the heritage of […]
Angelina Jolie Refutes Vanity Fair’s Portrayal Of Controversial Auditions The actress faced critics after the magazine said her directors gave Cambodian children money, then took it away. By Carla Herreria
By Carla Herreria
TANG CHHIN SOTHY VIA GETTY IMAGES
Angelina Jolie, flanked by her film’s sta speaks to media about her upcoming film on the Khmer Rouge era and Cambodian genocide during a press conference at a hotel in Siem Reap, Cambodia on February 18, 2017.
Angelina Jolie is upset over a recent Vanity Fair profile that depicted an audition scene for her upcoming Cambodian film “First They Killed My Father,” which many people found exploitative.
The Vanity Fair cover story, published online this week, described a “game” Jolie’s casting directors played with children from “orphanages, circuses and slum schools” while searching for an actor to play the role of Loung Ung, the author of the memoir on which the is film based.
In the game, as described by Vanity Fair contributor Evgenia Peretz, casting directors placed money in front of the children, asked them what they needed the money for, then took it away to elicit a reaction.
Critics called the casting strategy described in the magazine emotionally abusive and cruel.
Jolie said in a statement Saturday that the audition scene had been taken out of context. According to the actress, there were parents, guardians and non-governmental organization partners, as well as medical doctors, present throughout the entire filmmaking process, including auditions. She emphasized that no one was hurt by participating in the recreation of the film’s scenes.
“Every measure was taken to ensure the safety, comfort and well-being of the children on the film starting from the auditions through production to the present,” she told HuffPost in a statement.
Jolie, who directed the film, said the audition “game” described in the profile was an improvisation exercise based off a scene in the film. She also said real money was not taken from children during the auditions.
“I am upset that a pretend exercise in an improvisation, from an actual scene in the film, has been written about as if it was a real scenario,” said Jolie, a United Nations special envoy for refugees. “The suggestion that real money was taken from a child during an audition is false and upsetting. I would be outraged myself if this had happened.”
A source familiar with the film’s casting process told HuffPost the children who auditioned were aware they were improvising a scene from the film, adding that no real money was involved. Casting directors reiterated to the kids auditioning that it was a “pretend game” in order to ensure the actors did not feel any pressure, the source said.
The “pretend game” was reportedly based on Ung’s real-life experience of getting caught stealing by the Khmer Rouge. Ung, a Cambodian-American, survived the Khmer Rouge killings that claimed the lives of her parents, two siblings and nearly 2 million Cambodians in the late 1970s.
The actors who were ultimately cast in Jolie’s film are a mix of trained actors, orphans and disadvantaged children. Srey Moch Sareum, the child playing the film’s leading role, lives in a slum community and attends a non-governmental organization school in Cambodia.
“Srey Moch was the only child that stared at the money for a very, very long time,” Jolie had told Vanity Fair. “When she was forced to give it back, she became overwhelmed with emotion. All these different things came flooding back.”
Rithy Panh, a Cambodian filmmaker and producer on the film, said, ahead of the auditions, crews introduced the children to the camera equipment and explained they had to pretend to steal something that was left unattended and then get caught.
Panh, himself a survivor of the Cambodian genocide, called the criticism over the “game” described in the profile a “misunderstanding.”
“Great care was taken with the children not only during auditions, but throughout the entirety of the film’s making,” he said in a statement to HuffPost.
“Because the memories of the genocide are so raw, and many Cambodians still have difficulty speaking about their experiences, a team of doctors and therapists worked with us on set every day so that anyone from the cast or crew who wanted to talk could do so,” he added.
Jolie’s upcoming Netflix film is based on Ung’s 2000 memoir of the same name. Jolie said in the Vanity Fair profile that there was an “authentic connection to pain for everyone involved” with the film, which will be released later this year. She also explained that a therapist was on set every day to provide support for those impacted by flashbacks and nightmares of the Khmer Rouge’s rule.
Vanity Fair did not respond to HuffPost’s request for comment by the time of this publication.
Read Jolie and Panh’s full statements below:
Angelina Jolie, director:
Every measure was taken to ensure the safety, comfort and well-being of the children on the film starting from the auditions through production to the present. Parents, guardians, partner NGOs whose job it is to care for children, and medical doctors were always on hand everyday, to ensure everyone had all they needed. And above all to make sure that no one was in any way hurt by participating in the recreation of such a painful part of their country’s history.
I am upset that a pretend exercise in an improvisation, from an actual scene in the film, has been written about as if it was a real scenario. The suggestion that real money was taken from a child during an audition is false and upsetting. I would be outraged myself if this had happened.
The point of this film is to bring attention to the horrors children face in war, and to help fight to protect them.”
Rithy Panh, producer:
I want to comment on recent reports about the casting process for Angelina Jolie’s First They Killed My Father, which grossly mischaracterize how child actors were selected for the film, and I want to clear up the misunderstandings.
Because so many children were involved in the production, Angelina and I took the greatest care to ensure their welfare was protected. Our goal was to respect the realities of war, while nurturing everyone who helped us to recreate it for the film.
The casting was done in the most sensitive way possible. The children were from different backgrounds. Some were underprivileged; others were not. Some were orphans. All of the children were tended to at all times by relatives or carers from the NGOs responsible for them. The production team followed the families’ preferences and the NGO organizations’ guidelines. Some of the auditions took place on the NGOs’ premises.
Ahead of the screen tests, the casting crew showed the children the camera and the sound recording material. It explained to them that they were going to be asked to act out a part: to pretend to steal petty cash or a piece of food left unattended and then get caught in the act. It relates to a real episode from the life of Loung Ung, and a scene in the movie, when she and her siblings were caught by the Khmer Rouge and accused of stealing.
The purpose of the audition was to improvise with the children and explore how a child feels when caught doing something he or she is not supposed to be doing.
We wanted to see how they would improvise when their character is found ‘stealing’ and how they would justify their action. The children were not tricked or entrapped, as some have suggested. They understood very well that this was acting, and make believe. What made Srey Moch, who was chosen for the lead role of Loung Ung, so special was that she said that she would want the money not for herself, but for her grandfather.
Great care was taken with the children not only during auditions, but throughout the entirety of the film’s making. They were accompanied on set by their parents, other relatives or tutors. Time was set aside for them to study and play. The children’s well-being was monitored by a special team each day, including at home, and contact continues to the present. Because the memories of the genocide are so raw, and many Cambodians still have difficulty speaking about their experiences, a team of doctors and therapists worked with us on set every day so that anyone from the cast or crew who wanted to talk could do so.
The children gave their all in their performances and have made all of us in the production, and, I believe, in Cambodia, very proud.
Angelina Jolie’s Film Criticized For Using ‘Exploitative’ Game On Cambodian Orphans
“I am upset that a pretend exercise in an improvisation, from an actual scene in the film, has been written about as if it was a real scenario,” Jolie said in a statement to HuffPost.
“The suggestion that real money was taken from a child during an audition is false and upsetting. I would be outraged myself if this had happened.”
MAI-RUWA (WATER VENDOR)
When the day yawns
At an early dawn
Morning mists still
Hanging over the hill
Like a lazy ribbon from the harbour
Curling around to curry a favour
A man awakes to delve in his labour
From the one moment
Of the shrill crow of the cock
His face lined, back bent
A tedious day to unlock
He travels miles and miles
Glistening with sweats of his brows
Pushing his truck, fraught with tired smiles
His weatherbeaten face allows
Water, the food bringer
As Mai-Ruwa toils
On a slow pace he can’t linger
The sun boils
And whips his back
His barrow creeps from creek
To the river bank
Back to the bore-hole
And swathe itself with no leak
Until all gallons are sold
In the hue light of the evening
When strange shadows steal the show
He comes home whistling
With happy pockets worth the chore
a new week unfurls,
releasing from its viscera
loads of blessings,
wrapped with oils of love
brightened with kind thoughts.
It is going to be exceptional
and your dreams will be fulfilled
in a testimony-laden way.
- Moses was called to be a deliverer but took matters into his own hands and instead committed murder.
- David was called to be a ruler but instead of ruling his appetite for sexual lust, became an adulterer and murderer.
- Samson was called to be a judge of the Children of Israel. Instead he allowed his obsession over one woman to provide an opportunity for his enemies to capture and imprison him.
- Judas was called to be Christ’s disciple but instead he allowed greed and a covetous mindset to control him. After betraying Jesus, his remorse was so great, he committed suicide.
You have been called by God to fulfil a purpose. Is there an ‘instead’ situation in your life threatening to derail that purpose? If so, take heed of these examples.
If you’ve fallen, pick yourself up, call on God, confess and repent of your sin. Rise up in God’s…
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LAKE WILDWOOD — A Lake Wildwood recreation and swimming area with possible links to an E. coli outbreak has been closed off.
Three children have been hospitalized after testing positive for E. coli, according to an advisory sent by the Nevada County Health and Human Services Agency to the residents of Lake Wildwood.
The link between the three cases appears to be the Lake Wildwood Main Beach.
Samples collected from the area by the Nevada County Environmental Health Department revealed an increase in bacteria from feces, or fecal coliforms.
The beach has been closed and access to the swimming area has been blocked off until the local health departments can confirm that the levels of fecal coliforms have fallen. The Nevada County Public Health Department has also warned the public to stay out of Lake Wildwood for the time being.
Wastewater treatment systems at the lake have been inspected by…
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NEW YORK — “This is the case of the incredible shrinking airline seat.”
That’s how a federal judge in Washington D.C., Patricia Millet, described the issue in a decision she and two other judges handed down Friday, ordering the Federal Aviation Administration to review seat sizes and legroom on commercial airlines.
Previously, the FAA has refused to mandate how much space airlines must ensure customers have on planes. But the judge’s decision will force the agency to revisit the issue.
In a statement Saturday, the FAA said it is “studying the ruling carefully and any potential actions we may take to address the Court’s findings.”
The ruling comes after an advocacy group, Flyers Rights, petitioned the FAA in 2015 to implement new rules to regulate seat space.
The FAA rebuked the effort, so Flyers Rights took its demands to court and won the right to move forward.
The group celebrated…
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