Angelina Jolie has become an honorary citizen of Sarajevo at the city’s film festival, in recognition of her film In the Land of Blood and Honey about Bosnia’s 1992-1995 war.
Angelina Jolie’s directorial debut, In the Land of Blood and Honey, tells the story of a Bosnian Muslim woman’s love for a Bosnian Serb man during the war.
“This means so much to me. My heart is in this city,” said a tearful Angelina Jolie when given her award.
Angelina Jolie has become an honorary citizen of Sarajevo at the city's film festival
She said her experience making the film had been life-changing.
“The time I spent and the people I met in Bosnia have changed me forever,” she said.
“I can’t tell you how much it means to me to be named an honorary citizen of Sarajevo, a city so dear to my heart.”
The honor was announced in April.
It was presented to her by the prime minister of the Sarajevo Canton, Fikret Music.
In the Land of Blood and Honey, which features stark scenes of rape, executions and other war crimes, was first screened in Sarajevo last December.
Some Bosnian Serbs called for the film to be banned, saying it portrayed them as villains, but others said they wanted the film to be shown.
It was nominated for a Golden Globe earlier this year for best foreign language film.
Angelina Jolie was also attending the Sarajevo Film Festival to promote young talent in Bosnia.
The festival began during the Bosnian War and has gone on to become one of the largest in Europe.
Angelina Jolie’s transition from actress to director was not so smooth, as she had a “complete meltdown” while making her directorial debut with wartime film In the Land of Blood and Honey.
Angelina Jolie had to be comforted by partner Brad Pitt after collapsing in the shower in tears.
The 36-year-old star told fans on a live video web chat: “I had a complete emotional breakdown in the shower and Brad found me crying.
“I felt this huge responsibility and I felt very small and, who am I to take this on?”
Angelina Jolie added: “I had a complete meltdown.”
The actress took on the daunting project of writing and directing the love story, which is set in the Bosnian war.
Angelina Jolie told fans on a live video web chat that she had a complete emotional breakdown and cried after her directorial debut with wartime film In the Land of Blood and Honey
While Angelina Jolie is determined to tell the tale in order to raise awareness, she is unsure as to whether she will return to her behind the scenes role.
Angelina Jolie said: “I didn’t plan to become a director, and I still have trouble saying I’m a director.
“I just wanted to tell this story and I ended up by default being the director.
“It was a pleasure but I wonder if it would be a pleasure with another cast and crew, and a subject matter that wasn’t so special.”
Angelina Jolie was captivated by hearing heart-wrenching stories of people’s experiences living through the Bosnian war, but says at the time it happened, when she was aged 17, she was unaware of its seriousness.
The actress said: “I knew very little, like most Americans.
“I was 17 so I wasn’t very focussed. I was my own form of self-destructive, and it was a bad time.”
Angelina Jolie later came back to the subject and added: “I was a punk… you don’t imagine you could ever be a role model.”
She has clearly proven her directorial ability as the movie, which is released in Europe in February, has been nominated for an award at the Golden Globes.
The subject matter, which is close to her heart, has helped her to realize the importance of teaching her children certain values.
When asked by a fan what lessons she wished to pass onto her children, Angelina Jolie said “compassion and respect”.
She said: “I want my children to be aware of the world around them and have respect for all people around the world.”
Angelina Jolie added: “From the nature of the make-up of my family, they learn a lot abot each other. They dont see this divide which is dangerous.”
Angelina Jolie is being sued for the second time in a month.
This time, James J. Braddock, a Croatian journalist, is accusing Angelina Jolie, 36, of stealing the story behind her directorial debut, In the Land of Blood and Honey.
In legal documents obtained by RadarOnline, James J. Braddock claims that an article he wrote and published in 2007 is the basis for the film, which Angelina Jolie wrote and directed.
James J. Braddock gives examples of the similarities between his work and Angelina Jolie’s film in the lawsuit.
The lawsuit states that: “The Subject Work’s main female character is subject to continuous abuse and rape by soldiers and officers in the camp.”
“In addition to being raped continuously by soldiers and officers, she is forced to become a servant at the camp headquarters, a duty assumed by very few of the captives.”
James J. Braddock, a Croatian journalist, is accusing Angelina Jolie, 36, of stealing the story behind her directorial debut, In the Land of Blood and Honey
James J. Braddock is demanding that a court awards him damages.
“The Motion Picture’s main female character is also subject to continuous rape by soldiers and officers in the camp and subsequently becomes a servant at camp headquarters.”
The drama revolves around a Muslim woman named Aija who falls in love with Serbian Daniijel.
In the unlikely love story, which opens in American theatres on December 23, Daniijel inadvertently becomes Aija’s jailer when the Bosnians are captured by the Serbs.
James J. Braddock isn’t the only person taking legal action against Angelina Jolie.
Angelina Jolie and partner Brad Pitt are also being sued by a former nanny.
The couple fired 45-year-old Ana Charlotiaux for allegedly taking too much sick leave.
Ana Charlotiaux worked on Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt’s French estate, Chateau Miraval, from 2008-2010 and is demanding fair compensation for dismissal.