Angelina Jolie just gave the press reason to badger her with political questions for the foreseeable future.
The Oscar winner told Vanity Fair magazine she is “open” to running for office some day.
When you work as a humanitarian, you are conscious that politics have to be considered,” she tells di Giovanni. “Because if you really want to make an extreme change, then you have a responsibility.” Jolie then catches herself. “But I honestly don’t know in what role I would be more useful–I am conscious of what I do for a living, and that [could] make itpossible.”
… When directly asked if she sees herself pursuing a life in politics, diplomacy, or public service, Jolie says, “I am open.
It’s the kind of answer that could mean nothing. Moods changes, situations change, and what she says this month may not reflect her ultimate ambitions. It’s like trusting an actor who says he will retire after his current project wraps. A few months later that same star is touting a new franchise with a toothy grin.
Yet the notion of Jolie entering the political space isn’t a minor matter. She wouldn’t be the first celebrity to succeed in politics, what with Al Franken, Jesse Ventura and Ronald Reagan blazing the trail for her. Still, the following three reasons show why Jolie’s political future could be bright:
1. She’s an A-List Star: The era of the movie star is ebbing. The biggest actors can’t guarantee a movie opens anymore. Hollywood cares more about brand recognition than star quality. Jolie is that rare performer who can almost guarantee fannies in seats, just witness the box office might of Maleficent. If she enters politics she’ll bring all the glamour Hollywood can muster to her run, along with fellow A-lister Brad Pitt by her side.
2. The Press Will Have Her Back: Jolie isn’t a divisive figure in the Sean Penn mold. She is guarded in interviews, unwilling to throw reporters partisan red meat. It’s still fair to say she leans left based on the total of her public pronouncements, as does husband Pitt. That will make reporters eager to boost her chances against any opponent. Those same reporters will also salivate at the thought of covering her as part of the daily news cycle, drawing casual news readers, political junkies and film fans all at once. At a time when traditional press outlets continue to bleed readers, that matters.
3. She Does the Dirty Work: Leonardo DiCaprio rails against fossil fuels, and then leaves a Godzilla-sized carbon footprint in his wake. Jolie appears more eager to back up her words with actions. She’s gained respect for her humanitarian efforts in Africa, and she looks genuinely concerned and plugged in during her visits to impoverished communities. So far, she has visited more than 30 countries on behalf of the UN, risking her life at times in the process. She also backs up her actions with her checkbook.