ARCHIVES. In 1995, Brad Pitt gave a first interview to our magazine. The actor came to Paris to promote his latest film, “Babylon”… With Retro Match, follow the news through the archives of Paris Match.
The first time that Match meets Brad Pitt, in April 1995, the actor is, at 31, a rising star in Hollywood. He stood out four years earlier in “Thelma and Louise” by Ridley Scott, before confirming in “And in the middle flows a river” by Robert Redford in 1992, then in “Interview with a vampire” opposite Tom Cruise In 1994.
Match then interviewed him for the release of “Legends of the Fall”, which earned him his first Golden Globes nomination, three months earlier. Brad Pitt talks about his taste for the great outdoors, the “cool” life, his difficult beginnings in Los Angeles, the three months he retired to Amsterdam to decompress after his first successes…
And the best is yet to come for him, in that same year of 1995, with the release in the United States of “Seven” by David Fincher then of “The Army of the 12 Monkeys” by Terry Gilliam, and as a result, a Globe, and a first Oscar nomination….
Here is Brad Pitt’s interview, as published in Paris Match in 1995.
Paris Match n°2394, April 13, 1995
Brad Pitt in the footsteps of James Dean
Interview Philippe Berk
He is 29 years old and he is the new star of Hollywood. Since being discovered as a sexy hitchhiker in “Thelma and Louise”, he has established himself as a star in “And in the middle runs a river” and in “Interview with a vampire”. The major studios are racing for this young countryman whose innocent smile hides a secret crack. Today, he earns 9 million dollars per film (45 million francs). “Paris Match” met him for the release of “Autumn Legends”, a great ecological saga in the still pure America of the 19th century. His role: that of a good young man who escapes to flee a society where he does not find his place.
Paris Match. What was your relationship with Tom Cruise like during the filming of “Interview with the Vampire”?
Brad Pitt. Tom seems nice, but he didn’t do anything for me particularly. Despite everything, we have exaggeratedly darkened our relations. Tom is a perfectionist, like me. We had good days, sometimes exceptional, others much less fun. But in any case, we met in the evening over a drink. In any case, he is entitled to my respect. He’s a friend and I learned a lot by watching him work from the first week when he was looking for his role until the third, when he was completely into it. It was a great experience.
Were you uncomfortable during the scenes where you kissed each other on the neck?
Not at all! We played vampires driven by desire to survive. Male or female, it didn’t matter in this context.
A few years ago you lived in Amsterdam. Why did you go to Holland precisely?
I had just made five films in a row. I felt exhausted and drained. I wanted to relax. I stayed there for two and a half months. I rented an apartment, bought an old bicycle and rode every day. For a moment, I thought about moving there. Amsterdam reminds me a bit of New York. There are people from all over the world, all very nice, and they speak English. God knows if for us Americans it is important. I liked the “cool” side of life there. To rent an apartment, for example, all you have to do is visit it and give money in exchange for the keys. In Los Angeles, you have to fight to live in an attic and leave a three-week deposit.
Amsterdam bears little resemblance to your native Missouri…
In fact, it has nothing to do with it. I come from a place so lost that it is the “land of Oz”. It’s a Huckleberry Finn universe with rivers, lakes, leafy beds and places to get lost.
The shooting in Montana of “And in the middle flows a river” must have reminded you of these landscapes?
In part. Montana is an amazing state. We were shooting two hours from the first town and, rather than going back and forth every day, I pitched my tent 10 kilometers from the set. I stole food from the team, made a fire, retreated to my tent. It was very nice.
Are you more ant or cicada with your money?
Rather cicada. And even more! I lose my wallet all the time.
Do you have a businessman?
Why did you leave school so quickly?
I had bad grades. At the time, the profession of actor was not very respectable and, in class, I had taken “advertising” rather than “actor” as my main subject. Yet the day I decided that was what I wanted to do, I left in two weeks.
What jobs did you do when you arrived in Los Angeles?
Heaps. I slept in my car the first two nights, lived in six different places in eight months. I mostly did odd sales jobs. After a year, I got a small role. It was in “Dallas”, then others, before landing “Thelma and Louise”.
How were you contracted by your agent?
I was in drama school and a girl in the class needed a partner to audition. I went there and they kept me. Very classic.
How do you feel about being in the category of “sex symbols”?
It’s flattering, but there are dozens of us in this case. People often tell you that you are the best and sometimes you end up believing them. I’ve seen lots of attractive young actors no longer working on their roles. They forgot their professionalism in favor of their career plans. It’s a trap I don’t want to fall into.
Were you intimidated before your steamy scene with Geena Davis in “Thelma and Louise”?
Terribly. I kept saying to myself, “My God, my mother is going to see this!” I finally relaxed when Ridley Scott, the director, allowed me to put on some music to play the scene.
Which character would you like to play?
I absolutely want to make a film about the life of the jazz trumpeter. Chet Baker. A year before his death, he sold the rights to his music for a ridiculous sum. I’m having trouble getting permission to use it because they’re now asking for an indecent amount. But I don’t give up because I really like the character and his music. He’s the only musician I’ve ever heard who could hold a note endlessly.
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Brad Pitt, his first date with Match