Brad Pitt was paired up with his Moneyball costar Jonah Hill at today’s Oscar nominee luncheon. Brad teased that he met someone by the name of “Jorge” Clooney at the event, and it seems Mr. Pitt always has the last laugh at least when it comes to pranking Jonah. See the two stars banter about their on-set antics in this video from the luncheon.
Brad Pitt recently spoke with Variety’s Christy Grosz about his work on two best picture Oscar nominees, “Moneyball” and “The Tree of Life,” and collaborating with one of the most reclusive directors in the business.
How did Terrence Malick convey his concepts for “Tree of Life” to you as an actor?
He would come in with three pages of single-spaced thoughts and maybe some dialogue. What he does is he gets up in the morning and just bangs on the typewriter for an hour, ideas for the day’s work. I learned as an actor to pick a few things from that consciousness notebook that he would give me, and I would start to build something around that.
He starts with a very dense script but (uses) that as a spring board to capture those truthful missteps. He would do stuff like push Chivo (cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki) before a shot just to put him off balance. We were in the car doing what I thought was a very important scene and all of a sudden he threw the dog in the front seat to create this chaos.
How did that work with the young actors? I know the dialogue, at least as it is written, and Jessica (Chastain) knows the dialogue, but the boys don’t. He may tell them right before a scene, give them a response to aim for, but it’s very free form.
If Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill didn’t get to know each other well enough making Moneyball, they sure are getting in a lot of quality time together this award season. Yesterday was a doubleheader for the duo — Brad and Jonah took the podium at the Oscars luncheon and followed it up with a special Moneyball screening and Q&A session at the LACMA. The Oscar-nominated costars have been making the rounds to support their underdog drama, and if it doesn’t walk away with anything at the Academy Awards in a few weeks it’s certainly not for lack of trying on their part.
Bennett Miller’s adaptation of Michael Lewis’ non-fiction best seller Moneyball stars Brad Pitt as Billy Beane, a one-time phenom who flamed out in the big leagues and now works as the GM for the Oakland Athletics, a franchise that’s about to lose their three best players to free agency. Because the team isn’t in a financial position to spend as much as perennial favorites like the Yankees and the Red Sox, Beane realizes he needs to radically change how he evaluates what players can bring to the squad. After he meets Peter Brand (Jonah Hill), an Ivy League economics major working as an executive assistant for scouting on another team, Beane realizes he’s found the man who understands how to subvert the system of assessing players that’s been in place for nearly a century.
A Conversation with Academy Award Nominees Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill and Billy Beane Followed by a screening of Moneyball. February 06, 2012
2011/color/133 min. | Scr: Steven Zaillian , Aaron Sorkin /dir: Bennett Miller; w/ Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Robin Wright.
Tickets are free and open only to Film Independent, LACMA Film Club and New York Times Film Club members.
Saying he was “dizzy with joy … and caffeine,” Brad Pitt had plenty to celebrate early Tuesday morning after the Oscar nominations were announced in Beverly Hills.
Not only did he receive a nod for Best Actor in Moneyball, but that film, along with his movie Tree of Life, were both nominated for Best Picture.
But the star, 48, isn’t solely about celebrating himself.
“I am especially over the moon for Jonah [Hill] (and the other Moneyballers acknowledged today),” Pitt said in a statement. “Considering both films … nearly didn’t make it to the screen, this is especially sweet.”
Pitt’s plan to honor his fellow nominees this very special morning? “Pancakes for everyone.”
It’s been a good day for Brad Pitt. Not only is he Brad Pitt, but he also scored a Best Actor nomination for his work in Moneyball and watched both Moneyball and The Tree of Life nab nominations for Best Picture. So it’s no surprise that the actor is “over the moon” about the 2012 Oscars lineup. � Pitt tells EW. “So this is it, a great honor for everyone involved.” And Moneyball costar Jonah Hill’s nomination for Best Supporting Actor? “That’s just icing on the cake,” he says.
This year’s nomination is an especially meaningful one for Pitt. The actor, who has been nominated twice before for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) and Twelve Monkeys (1995), served as producer on both Moneyball and The Tree of Life. “I was working on both films from their inception,” he says. “And just what it took to get to the screen — all the artists and all the craftsmen, all the great talented people. And I’m just so happy that Tree of Life wasn’t forgotten.”
Of course, it has some stiff competition, especially from front-runners The Artist and The Descendants. But, for now, Pitt’s not focusing on Oscar’s Feb. 26 outcome. “At this point it almost becomes apples and oranges,” he says. “It’s a great, great group of films and I’m just so happy that our two films are recognized this way, because as I said, Moneyball was just dead in the water two years ago and The Tree of Life had its own difficulties.”
Speaking of The Descendants, how does Pitt feel about going up against good cane-stealing friend George Clooney in the Best Actor category? “It’s great fun having a friend in there and if it’s not me, then it might as well be him,” he says. I couldn’t be more happy.”