Angelina Jolie is leveraging her new film to boost her volunteer diplomatic efforts on behalf of refugees. She says “In the Land of Blood and Honey” is a “call to dialogue.”
“If we don’t keep talking, we won’t come up with better ways of addressing them,” she told Hollywood Dailies.
Jolie wrote and directed the film about a love affair between a Serbian rape camp administrator and a woman who is a Bosnian, sworn enemies of the Serbs.
The nature of the plot was so volatile a Bosnian women’s group campaigned against the film, claiming that it would portray a Bosnian rape victim falling in love with her Serbian rapist.
The country endured a brutal war between 1992 and 1995 that involved widespread atrocities and genocide.
Jolie is a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations High Commission on Refugees and has visited numerous Third World countries to call attention to the plight of war victims.
The war was rooted in thousands of years of hatred stemming back to the Muslim invasion of the region. Today, Bosnians are mostly Muslim while Serbs are mostly Christian.
Bosnian officials briefly suspended the film’s permit in the face of protests by women’s groups. But they reinstated it after Jolie assured that the movie was a love story and did not involve rape.
Nontheless, Jolie cut short shooting in Bosnia and several scenes were filmed in Hungary.
“The people felt as though the world had forgotten them,” Jolie said in a separate interview. “It was a time of great pain, and I wanted to depict how courageous people were — without offending anyone.”
The picture has been nominated for a Golden Globe for best foreign language film.
Check out her interview below.