Posts tagged ‘Angelina Jolie’

Jolie-Pitts help long-time friend in Namibia

Brad and Angie made headlines early this month when they donated $2 million to the N/a’an ku sê Wildlife Sanctuary after spending Christmas with Marlice and Rudie van Vuuren, owners of the 10,000-hectare Namibian sanctuary.

It wasn’t the first time Angelina has come to the aid of Marlice who she met in 2002 while filming “Beyond Borders.” Marlice, a staunch wildlife conservationist, provided the vultures for the 2003 thriller co-starring Clive Owens.

Marlice, a beauty just like Angelina, has supplied animals for more than 30 films and ads. After becoming fast friends with Marlice and Goeters, Marlice’s domesticated cheetah, Angelina asked to help in her wildlife rehabilitation.

The Harnas Wildlife Foundation where Marlice grew up (it was started on her parents’ farm in 1978 after a maltreated vervet monkey took up refuge, the first of a long line of orphaned and abused animals) needed $200,000 for fencing that would help turn the cattle ranch into a nature preserve.

At that time, the Pitt-Jolie’s spent several days on the sanctuary, falling in love with the stark landscape, the wide open spaces and the noble work the Vuurens were doing. They even decided to give birth to Shiloh in Swakopmund, Namibia, a move scoffed by some critics.

Christmas 2010 was chosen as the perfect time for a return visit, not only so Shiloh could stay in touch with her birthplace, but so the family could enjoy some down time at the sanctuary’s beautifully-designed lodge with floor to ceiling plate glass windows.

The kids spent several days hanging out with a three-legged cheetah named Lucky (Lucky rides in Marlice’s VW Golf and starred in ad for the German car manufacturer in 2009), and a menagerie of big cats, baboons and wild dogs. They helped Marlice and five-year-old son, Zacheo, feed orphaned baby baboons and foxes, watched Rudie stitch up a wild dog, visited the San school on the farm and even watched a leopard released back into the wild.

Marlice and Rudie, a rugby star turned doctor, started N/a’an ku sê, which means “God Will Protect Us” both to preserve African wildlife and to provide a “safe home” and livelihood for the San people, Namibia’s original inhabitants. Marlice grew up with the local Bush people (she’s fluent in their language) and, together with Rudie, maintains a school and free health clinic. Lifeline Clinic at Epukiro provide healthcare to more than 3500 patients.

To find out more on N/a’an ku sê, click here.

Big week for Budapest star gazing

Not only is Angelina Jolie in the Hungarian capital working on an unnamed film (it’s her directorial debut) about a Serbian man who attempts to rescue his Muslim lover from a Bosnian POW camp, but the Budapest edition of Robert DeNiro’s Japanese restaurant Nobu had its grand opening.

Paparazzi hoping to snap photos of Angelina and her brood lined up at several of Budapest’s luxe hotels (the Kempenski, the Corinthia and the art nouveau Four Seasons, to name a few), but the savvy mother of six rented a 10-bedroom villa on 8.6 acres in Hegyvidek, a gorgeous garden-filled suburb far from media eyes.

She enrolled Pax and Maddox in an exclusive private school in Mariaremete where Pax allegedly has a Hungarian sweetheart.

Brad joined Angelina on Friday, flying in with the twins, after filming scenes for his upcoming “Moneyball” in Boston. He has been spotted riding the streets of Budapest on a shiny BMW motorcycle and even accidentally zoomed up to meet his family at the wrong house, not that the neighbors minded.

Robert DeNiro, of course, was also in Budapest this week for the Eastern European debut of Nobu, the Japanese restaurant he started with celebrity chef Nobuyuki “Nobu” Matsuhisa. Jeremy Irons was also in attendance and although Brad and Angie were invited, they either snuck in the back door for quick nibble of Nobu’s famous yellow-tail sashimi with jalapeno (as some reported) or they sent their regrets.

Either way, Budapest is buzzing this week with paparazzi.