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Angelina Jolie's violent Maleficent scene was a metaphor for rape

Disney film's star Angelina Jolie reveals the idea behind the frightening wing-tearing scene

By Andrea Tim | Published: 14 Jun 2014

Maleficent's 'rape'
Photo: Eamonn M. McCormack/Getty Images

Angelina Jolie spoke on the BBC Radio's Woman's Hour about her efforts in the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, which she co-hosted as UN Special Envoy. In the interview, the actress revealed that the vicious scene in her latest film, Maleficent where the titular character is stripped of her wings is actually a metaphor for rape.

Reflecting on how a woman could "become so dark and lose all sense of her maternity, her womanhood, and her softness", Angelina said that she and the film's screenwriter Linda Woolverton thought that "something would have to be so violent and aggressive, and so of course for us, we were very conscious... it was a metaphor for rape."

The recovery of this abuse, according to Angelina is in "how the abused then have a choice of abusing others or overcoming and remaining loving, open people."

Angelina also spoke of her 2011 film In the Land of Blood and Honey, which depicted the rape of women in Bosnia.

On filming the graphic scenes, she said that "What's interesting is it's not actually very graphic... There's no nudity in the rape and you don't see as much. Sometimes staying on the woman's face, seeing her reaction, it's not so graphic, but it brings so much emotion to mind that it feels even more upsetting and graphic."


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