Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s eldest daughter, Zahara, will be attending Spelman College in Atlanta this fall. Jolie shared on social media this weekend that their 17-year-old is heading off to the esteemed historically Black liberal arts college for women.
“I’m so proud of her,” said Pitt about Zahara’s enrollment at Spelman while conducting interviews at the premiere of his latest film, Bullet Train, in Los Angeles on Monday. “She’s so smart. She’s going to flourish even more at college. It’s an exciting and beautiful time to find her own way and pursue her interests. I’m so proud.”
As two of his six children with Jolie will have left home for college by this fall—their oldest son, Maddox, 20, attends Yonsei University in South Korea—Pitt admits it’s emotionally difficult to see his kids transition into adults. “Where does the time go, right? They grow up too fast,” said the Oscar winner. “It brings a tear to the eye.”
In the meantime, Pitt is starring in the action-comedy Bullet Train as a highly skilled but unlucky assassin named Ladybug, who is returning to the job after a brief, self-induced hiatus. Hired by his handler, played by Sandra Bullock, he is hopeful his first assignment back—snatching a briefcase on a high-speed passenger train in Japan—will be a simple task. But he quickly realizes that the train is packed with other elite assassins, including ones played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Brian Tyree Henry, and Joey King.
“I have never been beaten up and slapped around this much,” laughed Pitt. “This is my first full-on action comedy and the fight scenes with the boys were really funny. We were having far too much fun. There was this Jackie Chan–Buster Keaton element to the fighting style that was a new form of comedy for me and I loved doing it.”
Bullet Train is based on the book of the same name by Kōtarō Isaka, one of Japan’s most popular novelists. Pitt was immediately won over by the screenplay’s wit.
“I’m past middle age, and when you get older, I’m just looking for fun and having a laugh. It’s more fun than sobbing and moaning,” said Pitt. “I read the script during the dark period of lockdown, prevaccination, and it made me laugh. This story is so damn funny. Every character has their own agenda, which means we were going to get a great cast and lots of really funny moments.”
The film’s director, David Leitch, began his career in Hollywood as a stuntman and fight choreographer and also as Pitt’s personal stunt double before making a mark as an action director, helming films including Deadpool 2, Atomic Blonde, Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, and John Wick.
“I met David in ’98 on the set of Fight Club, and he trained me for all the fights. I worked on a bunch of other films with him, and now it’s come full circle. It’s really nice to have him as the boss,” said Pitt. “David is so inventive with the infusion of comedy and violence. It’s a big flavor of the film and I had to be part of it. I knew I’d be in safe hands.”
Pitt also reunites with Bullock in Bullet Train. He briefly appeared in this past spring as well. The longtime friends first hatched the idea of collaborating together on multiple projects while on the Bullet Train set.
“Sandy and I were able to jump into each other’s film, and that was really fun. I like the idea of cross-pollinating in each other’s stuff,” said Pitt. “I’ve known Sandy for many years. She’s someone I can call for any favor and she came in and joined us. She always shows up for me. She’s really the best and was the perfect addition to our movie.”