Thursday, September 17, 2015




Cambodian PM backs Angelina Jolie's Khmer Rouge film

Cambodian premier Hun Sen on Thursday (Sep 17) voiced his support for Hollywood star Angelina Jolie's upcoming film about the murderous Khmer Rouge regime after the pair met in Phnom Penh.

PHNOM PENH: Cambodian premier Hun Sen on Thursday (Sep 17) voiced his support for Hollywood star Angelina Jolie's upcoming film about the murderous Khmer Rouge regime after the pair met in Phnom Penh.

The actress-turned-director is adapting "First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers", a memoir by Cambodian rights activist Loung Ung about surviving the communist regime.

In its quest for an agrarian Marxist utopia, the brutal Khmer Rouge killed up to two million Cambodians between 1975-1979 by starvation, overwork or outright execution.

Hun Sen said the film "reflects facts in Cambodia and will be a way for younger generations to understand the country", the prime minister's spokesman Eang Sophalleth told reporters after the meeting.
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09/17/2015 AT 02:50 PM EDT
Actress, director and noted humanitarian Angelina Jolie Pitt met with Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen Thursday as she prepares to film a feature about growing up during the brutal Khmer Rouge regime of the 1970s.

The upcoming film, First They Killed My Father, is based on the memoir by author and human-rights activist Loung Ung, who spent time with Jolie Pitt in her homeland this week.

Jolie Pitt, 40, and Sen were photographed exchanging handshakes at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh on Thursday. The meeting – which she attended in her capacity as a filmmaker – occurred the same week Jolie Pitt is scouting locations for the film she will direct and co-wrote with Ung.

A source tells PEOPLE exclusively that Jolie Pitt has spent the last week in the country working on pre-production for her film, which will have an all-Cambodian cast and be shot entirely in the Asian nation. She also visited with Ung's family and spent time examining the archives at the Bophana Centre, a Cambodian cultural and resource center, with producer Rithy Panh – who also accompanied her to the meeting with Sen.

"The intent of this project is not to revisit the horrors of the war but to bring to the screen characters that people around the world will empathize with, and to help other people to learn about Cambodia," Jolie Pitt told the AP earlier this summer.

First They Killed My Father, which is set to debut on Netflix, will be told from the perspective of a 5-year-old who experienced the war.


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