Angelina Jolie-Pitt, Hun Sen Meet to Discuss Film

Angelina Jolie-Pitt met with Prime Minister Hun Sen at the Peace Palace on Thursday to discuss her upcoming movie “First They Killed My Father” and a conservation area in Battambang championed by the actress, a spokesman for the prime minister said.

The Hollywood superstar, who adopted her son Maddox from a Cambodian orphanage in 2002, announced in July that she would direct an adaptation of the memoir penned by Khmer Rouge survivor Loung Ung.

Angelina Jolie-Pitt and Prime Minister Hun Sen speak at Mr Hun Sen's office building in Phnom Penh on Thursday. (Pring Samrang/Reuters)
Angelina Jolie-Pitt and Prime Minister Hun Sen speak at Mr Hun Sen’s office building in Phnom Penh on Thursday. (Pring Samrang/Reuters)

Ms. Jolie-Pitt discussed the project with the prime minister and emphasized that the aim of the film is to educate the audience on Cambodian culture rather than focus on the brutality of the Khmer Rouge, said Eang Sophalleth, a personal assistant of Prime Minister Hun Sen.

“The film is based on a book that reflects the life of every female child during the war. This is a film that not only reflects the cruelty, but will also reflect the people, culture, customs, and family groups in Cambodia,” Mr. Sophalleth said. “Especially it will show the love of parents for their children.”

Mr. Sophalleth said the pair also discussed the state of a protected area in Battambang province’s Samlot district where plans for a hydropower dam were scrapped by Mr. Hun Sen after Ms. Jolie-Pitt lobbied against them in 2004. The dam, which was scheduled to be built on the Samlot River, would have flooded a local village.

“She told Samdech [Hun Sen] that the Samlot protection area is developing well,” he said. “If we look from above you can see the green forest, and they [Mr. Hun Sen and Ms. Jolie-Pitt] are joining to protect forestry resources in Cambodia.”

The upcoming film will be released by online streaming company Netflix, and shooting is scheduled to commence later this year, with a release date in 2016. It will be co-produced by Cambodian filmmaker Rithy Panh.

Ms. Jolie-Pitt’s press officer could not be reached for comment.

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