Angelina Jolie: Kids Make Me Feel Like the Most Important Person in the World

10/12/2008 at 12:00 PM ET
Evan Agostini/AP

For many women, entering the world of motherhood and facing everything from sweet kisses to sticky fingers, their nervous inclinations are often calmed by their own mother’s guidance. Growing up with a "great mom" who maintained a certain "grace about her" throughout her life, Angelina Jolie shares that after becoming a mother herself, she constantly tried to "study and learn" from her own, Marcheline. "She was the kind of person who loved being a mom" says Angelina, who goes on to say that she does not "wish for anything other than that." With a life that could make luxuries and relaxation number one, Angelina instead says that her priorities revolve around her six children — Maddox Chivan, 7, Pax Thien, 4 ½, Zahara Marley, 3 ½, Shiloh Nouvel, 2, and Knox Léon and Vivienne Marcheline, 3 months — who every day bring the star "so much joy and peace." While Marcheline kept Angelina centered in the past, these days Angelina turns to her kids after a rough day and admits that she "can have the worst day in the world," but the second she walks through her front door, she is met by her children who seem to make all of her other worries fade away as they "think I’m great."

"They love me. They come to me when they get hurt. I feel like the most important person in the world — and I’ve got that! Anybody who has love in their life has that."

Taking the time to share the joys of having twins, Angelina calls the two newest additions to the Jolie-Pitt family "the sweetest little things." With the experience of welcoming only one child to the family at a time and then giving birth to twins, the 33-year-old can’t fathom how, in the past, each baby wasn’t lonely! "There’s that great thing where you wonder, how it almost seemed lonely for one because you got them together," explains Angelina, who is pleased that her youngest children will "always have each other." In addition to the babies interacting with each other — Angelina shares that they "they put their hands on each other" and are "starting to smile a lot" — the actress has managed to make handling two babies a bit easier by keeping the pair "pretty much on a schedule." Choosing to breastfeed as she did with Shiloh, Angelina — who jokes the decision allows her some "breaks in my day" — says they eat every three hours, although with recent trips to Germany, New York, and New Orleans, they are understandably "a little jet-lagged right now." As for their budding personalities, while it is "so hard to know early on," Angelina reveals that "Knox is very chill [and] likes music" and "Viv’s more aggressive and loud." With six kids — and hints at more in the future — Angelina realizes that she, along with her partner Brad Pitt, are "very lucky" that they have been blessed with such great kids, as she shares her tip on having a big family.

"The trick in having six is, once you pass three or four, it gets so crazy, anyway, that there’s just more chaos — and it’s okay."

Click ‘more’ to read about Angelina’s thoughts on PPD rumors, dealing with the paparazzi, and her children’s way of coping with frequent traveling!

Despite Angelina’s reassurance that the family is doing great, following the birth of the twins it was reported that the star was suffering from severe postpartum depression, a rumor that has simply become one of many, says the actress. "Somebody told me I was depressed. It has been years of people saying things about me, so I do tend to ignore it," explains Angelina. With the constant fabrication of stories and easy access to a growing list of tabloids a click away on the computer, Brad and Angelina’s biggest worry is their children "getting a hold of the Internet and seeing some stories." Instead of focusing on the rumors, she says that her time out of the public eye has been spent focusing on her family, which she calls "so real, close, and happy." Insisting that nothing else matters but the well-being of those she loves, Angelina shares that what’s most important to her is to "wake up, and…make sure everybody’s healthy. My life is being with my family."

In addition to dealing with fabricated front page cover stories, the Jolie-Pitt clan also must deal with the reality that comes along with their celebrity status, including the paparazzi. While Brad and Angelina have had years to cope with the flashing cameras and constant following, when it comes to their children, the couple find themselves explaining the photographers in the simplest of terms. "We usually say that mommy and daddy make movies — that there’s nothing special or different about us. It’s just the fact that we happen to make movies, so people take pictures. It’s one of those things that you really can’t explain," says Angelina, who admits that "it scares them sometimes." Although Angelina wants her kids to be able to enjoy their childhood, including spending time outdoors, she shares that they are not looking to put them "in situations where they’re in a park and they’re going to get too many people around them." In fact, like many celebrity parents, Angelina is no different in wishing that the paparazzi would take advantage of their long lens cameras and stay away from the children, who she believes are put into a scenario that can be "psychologically damaging." While the actress would love a "law that restricts the proximity that a photographer can have to the children," she says that among her six kids, each one handles the paparazzi craze a bit differently. As Angelina laughs that "Shiloh tends to wave," on a more serious note she shares that Zahara becomes quite frightened.

"Zahara hates photography. It makes her very nervous when she’s in the car. A lot of people say to us that she looks very serious. It’s because she’s actually upset when there’s a camera near her. She doesn’t like it."

Jettsetters from the beginning, Angelina says that while the family travels the world, they "do have places that we consider home." With one of their home bases in New Orleans, the family does "have most of our stuff, our books" at the houses that they return to on their downtime. As the couple stress to the kids that certain spots of the world are "home, we always come back to this," the children don’t seem to mind life on the go, as their mom refers to them as "really great travelers." Angelina explains,"We travel so much, and we’re such a big family that they immediately take over an empty room and it’s their home." However, mom and dad tend to help ease the burden of the move by making sure to "fill [the house] up with certain things that we know they love." In order to avoid buying "a bunch of things every time we go to a new place," in addition to having "a lot of the same storybooks and things like that" at each spot, each Jolie-Pitt child has their own special bag that they carry with their most prized possessions.

"Mad has a lot of little army men and military planes. Pax has rope and little stuffed monkeys. Zee Zee has a blanket that was once pink, but is now the dirtiest shade of brown you can imagine. Shiloh has little silkies. They’re like these square things with silk on them that she has to have. Knox and Viv don’t have their things yet, but I’m sure you’ll hear about it when they do."

With six children age seven and under, including two babies, Angelina admits that "there was a discussion in the house" whether the in-demand actress should return to work at all. Having had a year off from filming anything, Angelina shares that Brad was "wonderfully supportive" of the two of them successfully balancing their careers with their growing family, as he explained that by February — when Angelina reveals she is "looking at something" — they will be in a different spot in time. As she says that they are "trying to balance it all," Angelina is motivated by Brad’s positive attitude toward her return to the big screen this winter.

"[Brad said,] ‘We’re here and we’re great. The babies will be sitting up and hanging out in your trailer. It’s going to be all right. The kids are at school, and they will come visit.’"

Source: Changeling Press Tour

FILED UNDER: Multiples , News , Parenting

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Showing 42 comments

Sarah on

Poor little Zahara. As much as I love looking at these adorable pictures of celebrity babies, it doesn’t seem worth it when you hear about how frightened and upset these kids get. I know Reese and Ryan mentioned that their Ava is also very scared of the paparazzi. It’s sad when you realize how intrusive the paps are. I saw pictures on another site with a pap hiding behind a tree at J.J. and Sean Federline’s pre-school to get pictures of them with Britney. The paps are taking it way too far.

ms v on

It sounds like they have such a happy, down-to-earth family…I’m so pleased for them. I admire Brad and Ange for supporting each other so well and they seem to have found the perfect balance so that they can give everyone, including each other, time.

Jess on

Aww! So cute! =) Love hearing about the Jolie-Pitts.

Shame to hear about the paps bothering Zee Zee. =( They really should step back sometimes…they’d get much better pictures if they did!

I think its a clever idea having ‘special bags’ for each child! =D

There’s no doubt Angelina & Brad love their children immensely. It’s really beautiful.

Jessica on

I don’t like taking pictures either, I could only imagine how irritating it must be to walk outside and have a team of people shouting, pushing, and taking pitures. I feel bad for little Zahara. I guess this means that she won’t be hitting the runway like I’d hoped.

Jess on

Just seen E!’s video with some exclusive snaps from W magazine.

Pictures include: Ange laughing with Maddox; Ange sat on a wall with Shiloh (l) and Pax (r); With one of the twins (in a baby carrier); Holding hands with Zee.

They’re amazing. Really beautiful, really natural.

Jessica on

Could you post the link Jess.

Nicole on

Jess, you’re right, the pictures are gorgeous!

I was very interested to hear about how the kids transition from house to house; I don’t think it’s bad for them, but all of a sudden it made sense to me that they take the same things with them, and that they have certain things. That’s a great way to do it!

Allison on

“Shiloh has little silkies. They’re like these square things with silk on them that she has to have.”

I think I know what Angie’s talking about.

Heather on

I’d rather see sites like this close entirely (no offense) when I hear a mother talk about how scared her little girl is by the paps that constantly stalk them. That is an absolute shame. My heart breaks for poor little Zahara.

Sarah Jo on

I cannot understand why so many of you are taken in by her.

With one hand she is exploiting the lives of her children to the media and with the other hand, she pushing them away by living in rented homes around the world with Brad telling magazines that the media has hounded them out of every city.

I’m in my twenties, I have children, and I would be mortified if I found a photograph my dad took of my mum breastfeeing me which made the front of the tabloid rags. It’s not beautiful, it’s intrusive. A baby deserves to have their lunch in peace without a camera there to record the moment. I said the same about Johnny Depp’s decision to photograph his partner doing the same with their child.

When I am nursing my babies, I value those moments and it is a special time for me and them. And for that reason, my opinion of the Jolie-Pitts has sank without a trace.

I still think they have gorgeous children and I hope my young son will show the same spirit Pax is displaying, he’s such a cool little kid, but I can’t say I approve of or advocate anything their parents do.

Pogue Mahone on

We have 11 kids(all home-made!) and I agree after 3 there’s really no difference; it’s just one more. I found the hardest was from 2 to 3 actually, and after that you really don’t even notice.It is very active, noisy, and chaotic in our house too but we wouldn’t have it any other way. We are also very structured and organized,and we have house rules and the kids all have chores so it’s managable and runs like a well-oiled machine!

Emily on

I had silk thingies like Zahara growing up…

carie on

awesome article. love hearing from her about her life. I really don’t get why there can’t be laws requiring them to stay a certain distance away. With long lenses, seriously…it’s possible. The status quo of celebrity photo-taking could still remain intact, and the children of all celebrities would be scared less. I mean, it’s a no-win for celebrities….they shouldn’t have to become hermits to protect their children from the man shoving the camera 2 inches from their face.

carolina on

Great interview!
Can someone send me the link to the E! video that Jess was talking about, I’m dying to see those photos!

Amanda on

“Zahara hates photography. It makes her very nervous when she’s in the car. A lot of people say to us that she looks very serious. It’s because she’s actually upset when there’s a camera near her. She doesn’t like it.”
And that is exactly why I would much rather see photoshoots of celebrity children than candid pictures. I can’t imagine what must be going through the mind of a 3 year old to see 10, 15, 20 strange men with big cameras, calling your name and the names of your family, big bright flashes going off in your face. And the fact that poor little Zahara even gets anxious in the car just breaks my heart. She knows what’s coming and it frightens her.

The more I hear things like this, the more I begin to look at candid pictures in a negative light. There need to be laws to protect children. Pronto.

dsmom on

How do you afford 11 kids? College etc…

babyboopie on

Love Angie! I hope she stays in my country forever, she is always welcome here in France.

mamabear on

That’s so cute about “…Shiloh and her
little silkies…”

What Shiloh has are:

Baby Lovie with Satin Trim by Swaddle Designs

I’ve seen her with them in almost every color!

Molly on

i think that she should eventually return to acting, she may make one move every two or three years and that will make her even more so in demand and all of us looking forward to see her

isacutie on

Like many fans of the JPs, I’m torn between wanting to see their photos and wanting them to have the privacy that they so deserve. Now that Angie has mentioned how cameras are frightening to Zee, I think I’m leaning even more towards not minding not seeing them on the spotlight so much.

I do wish the paps would just use the long lenses. Angie and Brad have been criticised by some people, saying that they complain about not having privacy and having pictures of their kids taken (yet they have gone and sold pictures of their kids for charity). But I think what they said was that they know paps will take their pictures, they just want them not to be so in their faces when they do so, thus the use of long lenses.

Offtopic: I just want to invite Brad fans to visit this Monday. The owner of the site is having a contest and the prizes are something I think many Brad fans would want. Many thanks.

Jess on

Pogue Mahone on

REPLY TO dsmom:re:financing a large family:
We have investments that we have put away to pay for university.(actually, our oldest is currently in university in Montreal taking Business Admin.) we lend them the money, have them work over the summer to help pay costs, and upon graduation and a full-time job they will pay us back, interest free. As for food, we always buy in bulk and use coupons.Clothes are passed down.Our house is 3 floors, 7 bedrooms,and 3 bathrooms.The kids do chores to earn allowance and learn the value of money, budgeting,and savings.We homeschool and my husband works from home.My mother lives with us.It may seem wacky…but it works!🙂

Joeanne on

I read a cute interview where Angie wishes she was part of a regular mommy and me group so she could check in with other moms about things like educating the kids, how to answer tough questions asked by her kids, how to explain to Zee why she and mommy don’t have the same hair texture, and raising children with different skin color than she and Brad. Of course I’m paraphrasing so forgive me if I get something wrong but I think you get the idea. She has friends with kids and can talk to them but I think it’s kinda cute that Angie wants reassurance and advice from regular moms. This is why I’m a fan. She never pretends to have all the answers and is willing to share her insecurities.

JM on

I think a law would be great. All celeb parents should get together and fight for one. As much as we love looking at pictures (only cause they’re easily available) it’s hard to know that many of the kids are frightened by them. And it is a wonder Zahara always looks sad and would explain alot of why she never smiles. It’s truly not fair to them that they have to live this kind of lifestyle just because of who their parents are. I remember someone asked Kate Hudson about paparazzi when she was little and she said it truly wasn’t even close to what it is now. She said that maybe ever once in awhile they’d have a photographer try to get a picture but it was never a big deal like it is now where they can’t even walk out front of their house without having a dozen or so paparazzi in there face. I guess the internet changed all this for celeb kids. They no longer get to be normal kids😦
But it’s good that Angie and Brad try to give them as much normalcy as they possibly can. And I am sure they will grow up well adjusted.

Harley on

Again, there needs to be a law to protect the kids. It’s hard enough to deal with it as an adult but quite another to even grasp it as a child! The lenses they have do work from quite a distance, heck, they use them in sports. What’s the harm of a 20ft distance?

Kylie on


I would love to read that…do u remember where u read it?

Thanks a bunch : )

Mia on

I love Angie and Brad because they’re so honest and have so much power, but do so much good with it. And they seem like truly down to earth, humble, and good people.

The pics I have seen are beautiful. And I have no problem with them.

For example: Kurt Cobain journals that were published and released a few years ago. I think thats an invasion of privacy, and I can see where controversy may exist in a situation like that.

But on the issue of the Jolie-Pitt pictures being too private or intimate: The fact that they all/ both agreed and consented to take the pics and have them released is fine. Especially since Brad took the pics himself. I think it might’ve been different if an outside or hired photographer took them.

Judy on

Z may hate the papzs, but she knows how to deal with them. She gives them what I call The Look. She gets this expression like she is saying, “I’m not playing with you — get those cameras the hell outa my face!” She’s a feisty little thing and she looks more mad than scared when the papzs start bothering her.

CelebBabyLover on

Awww! I love this interview! I also love that they are apparently calling Zahara “Zee Zee” now!

Speaking of Zahara, though…I felt so bad for her when I read about Angie saying she’s scared of the cameras. The poor little sweetie! No wonder she usually isn’t smiling in pap photos!

It also seems as though Zee Zee has been scared of the cameras for quite awhile now, as I remember Brad mentioning her being scared of them in an interview about a year ago.

How awful for her to even feel nervous about the paps when she’s in the car!

I also took a look at that E! video…and I love the pictures! I like how, in the picture of Angie, Shi, and Pax, Shi is wearing just a diaper and Pax is at least topless. They couldn’t look more like a “normal” family in that picture if they tried!

I did not, however, see the picture of Angie holding hands with Z or Angie with one of the twins in a baby carrier.😦

All of that said…The tabs must be fuming right now! Angie and Brad have NOT split, are happy, Angie just confirmed that the kids actually don’t mind moving around all the time, etc.

In fact, Angie pretty much just shot down every single one of the “stories” the tabs keep trying to print all the time! Go Angie, and take that, tabs!🙂

brooke on

When zahara is older she will realize the paparazzi is the least of her problems. She was lucky to have been adopted by brad and angelina, her world would be very different and way worse, so in the long run the paparzzi won’t be such an issue. Plus angelina and brad love attention and do photoshoots, so it comes with the territory in that family.

Joeanne on

I’m sorry I can’t find the article. It was from a Brazilian newspaper and had been translated into English. If I find it I’ll post it for you.

I don’t believe one should compare a photoshoot to 20-50 paparazzi surrounding a child. The photographer who shot the People cover for the JP twins said he was in and out in 20 minutes. He also shot Shiloh’s People cover. The W shoot was done by Brad. In both cases the kids are in a safe environment. On the street the kids are often surrounded by complete strangers who are literally pushing and shoving each other within feet of the kids to get “the shot.” There are many videos, not only featuring the JP kids, to attest to this.

Both Brad and Angie as well as many other celebrity parents have said take the pictures but use a long lense. I don’t see this as boo hooing or complaining. I see this as asking the paparazzi to be reasonable and decent.

A year or two ago I read an article questioning why paparazzi often choose not to use long lenses although some would prefer to. It’s because not all the paparazzi will agree to it. If a photographer decides to shoot from across the street while 10 photographers choose to shoot from 3 feet away, the shot for the photographer across the street is ruined because now he has a picture of Zahara obscured by a sea of paparazzi. To make sure he gets her face, he needs to be bumping elbows with the rest of them. I don’t see this changing any time soon.

Sarah Jo on

I actually thought I made a valid point but it is increasingly difficult to have an opinion on CBB

kaya on

Judy, I thought the same thing! I hate to play favorites, but Zahara has always amused me with ‘The Look’, it’s just too cute on such a little girl. She always stood out for me as the feisty one. I never throught she would be the one who’s most frightened:/ That’s sad and I agree on the long lense thing.

Sarah on

brooke, i’m wondering how your reasoning makes any sense. are you saying that it’s ok that zahara feels scared and anxious because she could have been worse off? her being adopted does not make her any less entitled to feeling safe and secure. i’m sure that when zahara grows up she will be very appreciative of everything her family has materially but that is no justification for her being stalked right now.

p.s. and i’m pretty sure that brad and angelina think that they’re the lucky ones for having zahara in their life, not the other way around.

SJ on

Why no attention to the fact that Angelina has gone on record to say she has bought her seven year old a knife?

FC on

I don’t blame Zahara one bit for not taking to having cameras in her face constantly while out and about with her parents.

But I still find that most of the beautiful shots of them out and about do seem to be taken when it’s with a telephoto zoom lens. I mean, I know none of the papz is going to stop taking them, but I’m like Angelina, if they’re going to do it, use that and keep the distance. It benefits them both. They get their shot, and the children are happy and not bothered or stressed. And a few admirers, like me, can enjoy a beautiful photo without feeling guilty. Nothing’s wrong with a little compromise sometimes.

But, anyway, I love the interview. They sound like such a wonderful family, and seem to be adjusting well to the six tots in their house, not that they wouldn’t. And I love the new nickname for Zahara. Zee Zee is adorable for her, just as adorable as she is.

Gina on

Children liking or disliking the Pap is a personality thing. Zee may be an introvert and may stay like that forever (hiding from the spot light) I bet most of you thought it was cute when Angelina said that Shiloh waves to the Pap, I know I did. It will be interesting to see how the twins react in a couple of years because if you think about it Maddox, Pax and Zee seem afraid/annoyed by the Pap and Shiloh is not. But just remember, Paps are intrusive because WE want them to be.

brooke on

Joeanne and sarah if you don’t agree with the paparazzi at all, than you shouldn’t be visiting a site called celebrity baby blog which puts 85% of pictures the paparazzi takes lol. Other than the photoshoots when a baby is born, most of the other pictures we see of celebrities and their children are at playgrounds, getting ice cream, getting their kids from school, etc. If it wasn’t for paparazzi they would be no site like this. You can’t pick or choose when you want pics taken or not, or when you freely wanna do a photoshoot. Your not private for one thing, and not another, it doesn’t work that way

Sarah on

brooke, if you notice i admitted to loving these pictures in my first post/the first post. but i do question whether or not it’s worth it when you hear about these kids being traumatized. and in my response to your post i really was just questioning you justifying of the paparazzi by saying that at least zahara is somehow “better off” than she would have been. i still don’t get how her being adopted has any bearing on whether or not the paparazzi should follow her around.

Joeanne on

Brooke you’re talking in absolute terms. The primary topic of discussion is what method is used to get the photo. Are they taken of a scared child surrounded by strangers with a packlike mentality or taken in a safe environment at best or at worst an environment where the shots are taken with a telephoto lense? You equated a paparazzi photo with that of a photoshoot and I disagreed and gave my reasons as to why. Please point out where in my post I stated I did not agree with the paparazzi at all. Yeah, you can’t.

CelebBabyLover on

Gina- Z may very well be an introvert, but I think saying that she may “hide from the spotlight” forever is a bit of an exageration. Unless she is an extreme introvert, that probably won’t be the case.

My mother is very much an introvert, but she doesn’t try to “hide” from the outside world. In fact, there are plenty of public places (bookstores, for one) that she actually enjoys going to!🙂

Tanya on

I dont think Zahara is an introvert at all.Shes probably the most outgoing of them all when they`re at home, out of the spotlight. But the papparazzi scares her so maybe shes thinking something in the lines of “If I give them the angry look everytime they photograph me hopefully they eventually will think I`m ugly or boring and leave me alone”.

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