Mumbai : He is one of the biggest stars in Hollywood and there is an intense focus on his personal life but Brad Pitt says he has learnt to prioritise.
Pitt made a surprise trip to India to promote his dark comedy, “War Machine”, which releases on Netflix this Friday.
“You have to make time for yourself, time for your family. It is not so difficult to keep a balance. I’m able to compartmentalise very well,” Pitt, 53, said when asked about handling the pressure of being a superstar.
Pitt was in news for his split from actress wife Angelina Jolie. In previous interviews, he has discussed his tough phase and how he struggled with a drinking problem.
The actor, however, seemed relaxed during his trip here as he took on a range of questions about his extensive film career.
He last visited Mumbai and Pune for the shooting of Jolie’s film “A Mighty Heart”. Recalling the time, Pitt said, “I would put a helmet on and roam around on an Enfield.”
Pitt sat with Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan for the discussion on the future of movie-making.
The Hollywood star seemed curious about filmmaking in Bollywood, including the song-and-dance routine while confessing that he was bad at both hence had no future here.
SRK joked it was not difficult to master the technique and if everything fails, he advised him to ‘just stand there and open your arms wide.’
“We will make you dance in Bollywood. We make everyone dance in Bollywood,” SRK assured him.
“Really? Then it would be the first film I ever dance in,” Pitt joked as he attempted SRK’s signature move.
When asked the secret behind their long careers, Pitt said, “I try to reinvent constantly. And fortunately we were about to survive our mistakes.”
Shah Rukh attributed it to staying simple and keeping the family life separate from his movie-star persona.
“My kids, more often than not don’t like my films. It is not a special thing in the house for papa’s film to do well.
Your friends in the industry also tell you to keep it simple.”
On a question about the process of selecting scripts, Pitt said, “For me it is more about who is telling the story.
It starts from a script, a piece of writing. I don’t know about Shah Rukh but I want to surround myself with friends.”
Shah Rukh agreed, “Sometimes, I don’t even want to know the story. I just want to know who’s telling it.”
“War Machine”, directed by David Michod, is a dark comedy on the absurdities of war.
Pitt plays a US General, Glenn McMahon, posted in Afghanistan.
It is inspired by late journalist Michael Hastings’s book “The Operators: The Wild & Terrifying Inside Story of America’s War in Afghanistan”.
An investment in the range of USD 60 million also makes it Netflix’s biggest-budget feature to date.
Pitt’s character is loosely based on General Stanley A McChrystal, a retired United States Army general best known for his command of Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC).
The actor said Hastings was frustrated that his story became more about the “sensational dismissal” of the General rather than being a discussion on the system.
Pitt said he wanted to carry forward the legacy of great war movies like “Dr Strangelove”, “MASH” and “Catch-22”.
Writer-director Michod, who joined the two actors on the stage mid-session, said he changed the character’s name because he did not want it to appear like a biopic on McChrystal.
For him, it was also an interesting opportunity to feature Pitt in a comedy role.
“It was a funny character for Brad to play. He is an incredibly gifted comedic actor.