Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

“I've needed her”: Angelina Jolie opens up about her late mother in moving interview

Angelina Jolie and Marcheline Bertrand.jpg

Angelina Jolie has spoken out about how much she misses her mum, the late actor Marcheline Bertrand, in a candid and moving interview with her friend Marianne Pearl in Elle France.

“She would have thrived as a grandmother,” Jolie says of Bertrand, who died of breast cancer in 2007. “I know how much she would have contributed to their [her children’s] lives and I am sad they will miss out on that.”

The director and her estranged husband Brad Pitt have six kids together – Maddox, 15, Pax, 13, Zahara, 12, Shiloh, 10, and 8-year-old twins Vivienne and Knox.

The couple announced they were separating last September after 11 years together, and Jolie says she has really missed having her mum’s advice in recent months. 

“I would give anything for her to be with me at this time. I’ve needed her,” the 41-year-old says. “I talk to her often in my mind and try to think what she might say and how she might guide me.”

Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie with her mum Marcheline Bertrand in 2001

Bertrand, who was French-American, raised Jolie and her brother Haven by herself, after divorcing Hollywood director Jon Voight when Jolie was still a toddler.

She spent 10 years battling breast cancer before succumbing to the illness 10 years ago, aged 56.

Four years ago, Jolie underwent a preventative double mastectomy after finding out that she had an 87% risk of contracting the disease.

“My mother fought cancer for almost a decade…,” she wrote in an article for the New York Timesannouncing why she courageously opted for surgery.


Read more: Angelina Jolie speaks out about her divorce from Brad Pitt


“She held out long enough to meet the first of her grandchildren and to hold them in her arms. But my other children will never have the chance to know her and experience how loving and gracious she was.

“We often speak of ‘Mommy’s mommy,’ and I find myself trying to explain the illness that took her away from us. They have asked if the same could happen to me. I have always told them not to worry, but the truth is I carry a ‘faulty’ gene, BRCA1, which sharply increases my risk of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer.”

Jolie spoke of her relief that her children now “don’t need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer”.

“The decision to have a mastectomy was not easy. But it is one I am very happy that I made,” she said.

Angelina Jolie and children

Angelina says her mum "would have thrived as a grandmother"

In a revealing interview with GQ Style last month, Pitt described his split from Jolie as a “huge generator for change”.

The actor said was undergoing therapy and had quit drinking, after a lifetime of alcohol and cannabis use.

Jolie

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt in 2015

“I can’t remember a day since I got out of college when I wasn’t boozing or had a spliff, or something…,” he said.

“I’m really, really happy to be done with all of that. I mean, I stopped everything except boozing when I started my family. But even this last year, you know – things I wasn’t dealing with. I was boozing too much.”


Read more:  Stylist meets Hollywood’s most multi-faceted woman, Angelina Jolie


The couple had been embroiled in a bitter custody dispute over their six children, that saw Pitt investigated and later cleared of a child abuse allegation.

The 53-year-old said he and Jolie had decided to put aside any sense of “vitriolic hatred”, and work together on sorting out their issues.

“It is the greatest gift and responsibility,” Jolie says of motherhood, in her latest interview. “It means doing everything that you can to live by your values and try to be an example to your children.”

Photos: Rex Features

Related

BRAD PITT.jpg

Brad Pitt on his divorce from Angelina Jolie: “I was boozing too much”

cancer love what matters.JPG

This mother and daughter’s cancer battle is inspiring women everywhere

rexfeatures_1670789c.jpg

Angelina Jolie lands her first job since Brad Pitt split

More

The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Reese Witherspoon’s vacation vibes to Cara Delevingne’s birthday getaway

by Nicola Colyer
16 Aug 2017

Paris Hilton defends Donald Trump from sexual assault allegations

“I think [the women] are just trying to get attention and get fame...”

by Moya Crockett
16 Aug 2017

The personality trait that Mindy Kaling hopes to pass on to her baby

Kaling gets real about motherhood as she confirms her pregnancy

by Kayleigh Dray
15 Aug 2017

Paris Hilton describes the emotional fallout of her 2001 sex tape

“I could not leave my house for months”

by Amy Swales
15 Aug 2017

Taylor Swift wins sexual assault case for “anyone who feels silenced”

“My hope is to help those whose voices should also be heard”

by Amy Swales
15 Aug 2017

This is why you’ll never see Jennifer Aniston on social media

That account you’re following is a fake.

by Moya Crockett
15 Aug 2017

Oprah Winfrey patiently explains why she’ll never marry her boyfriend

Just in case anyone thought it was their business

by Kayleigh Dray
15 Aug 2017

Ryan Reynolds’ emotional tribute to woman killed on set of Deadpool 2

The death of Joi ‘SJ’ Harris has left him “heartbroken”

by Kayleigh Dray
15 Aug 2017

Billie Piper on feminism, fear and her first love

"I’m just afraid of all of it."

by Stylist
15 Aug 2017

Laura Dern shares some pretty solid life advice

“Write your own story”

by Nicola Colyer
14 Aug 2017