Angelina Jolie Defends Her “Cruel” Child Casting Method Amid Online Backlash

She reportedly teased poor Cambodian children with money before taking it away.

Angelina Jolie has fought back against backlash online since she reportedly used “disturbing” techniques to cast Cambodian children in her new film, First They Killed My Father.

In a Vanity Fair interview, the mum-of-six revealed that her casting team put money on a table in front of poor children from orphanages and slums, and instructed them to think of something they needed the money for.

The magazine described the casting method as “rather disturbing in its realism”, as part of the audition involved the child being instructed to take the money, but then being forced to hand it back.

During the interview, the 42-year-old actress said, “Srey Moch [the girl ultimately chosen for the part] was the only child that stared at the money for a very, very long time. When she was forced to give it back, she became overwhelmed with emotion. She said her grandfather had died, and they didn’t have enough money for a nice funeral.”

People have been criticising Angelina for using this casting technique, with one fan tweeting, “Disappointed by Angelina Jolie and Co’s method to recruit Cambodian child actors. Cruel to dangle money in front of poor kids and take it away”.

Another person compared her actions to child abuse.

Angelina has since responded to the backlash, saying, “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,” her statement read.

“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.”

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