It was on this date, June 4, 1975, that American actress, film director, and screenwriter Angelina Jolie was born. Daughter of Oscar-winning actor Jon Voight (Midnight Cowboy, 1969; Deliverance, 1972; The Odessa File, 1974; Coming Home, 1978), Jolie won herself an Oscar for her supporting role in Girl, Interrupted (1999), as well as Golden Globes for George Wallace (1997) and Gia (1998). She has starred in such successful films as the two Lara Croft Tomb Raider films (2001, 2003), Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005), Wanted (2008), Salt (2010), A Mighty Heart (2007) and Changeling (2008).
Jolie has done humanitarian work as a Special Envoy and former Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Acclaimed by many sources at various times as the most beautiful woman in the world, Jolie has the distinction of a species of trapdoor spider, native to Northern California, being named after her: Aptostichus angelinajolieae. She was briefly married to actor Billy Bob Thornton and is currently partnered with actor Brad Pitt, who shares her religious indifferentism.
In a 6 September 2000 interview with The Onion A.V. Club, she was asked, “Is there a God?” Angelina Jolie replied, “Hmm … For some people. I hope so, for them. For the people who believe in it, I hope so. There doesn’t need to be a God for me. There’s something in people that’s spiritual, that’s godlike. I don’t feel like doing things just because people say things, but I also don’t really know if it’s better to just not believe in anything, either.” Jolie remarked in a 29 December 2004 interview in The Sun, “I have a Buddhist son and I’d like a Christian and a Muslim child, too” (as if children can choose their religion), by which she may mean she views all religions as equally valid. Or Angelina Jolie thinks that meaning in life can be found everywhere, such as in family and in global humanitarian work, though she never mentions religion and humanitarian work in the same breath!
Read about George Carlin, Pope Gregory and calendar reform, creating Israel, churches vs. workers, Lady Mary’s skeptical letters from Turkey, journalist Studs Terkel, getting scared sacred with “Godspell,” Bertrand Russell, and more …