Angelina Jolie sued over In the Land of Blood and Honey | Film | The GuardianAngelina Jolie's first foray into film directing has not, so far, been bump free. Last year she was forced to defend In the Land of Blood and Honey against angry protestations from Bosnian victims of sexual violence during the Balkan conflict of the s: now she's facing a lawsuit from a Croatian journalist who says her film borrows much of its storyline from his book. James Braddock, also known as Josip Knezevic, is suing Jolie and producers of her film in the northern district court of Illinois claiming In the Land of Blood and Honey violates the copyright on his book The Soul Shattering. Both works, he claims, are set in war-torn Bosnia and Herzogovina and feature a main female character who is captured, imprisoned and raped by soldiers, as well as a Serbian camp commander who falls in love with the woman and helps her escape. Futhermore, says Braddock, he met a producer who worked with Jolie to discuss adapting his book into a movie several times in and , and subsequently kept in touch with him via email and text message over the following two years. Edin Sarkic, the producer in question, is a Bosnian film-maker who reportedly helped Jolie attain permits to film in Sarajevo. He is also named in the suit as a co-defendant.
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The Unsubtle Politics of 'In the Land of Blood and Honey'
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By Dominic Patten. The Oscar winning actress denied in the strongest legal terms that she took key elements of a book on the Bosnian War for her film In The Land of Blood and Honey. James J. Braddock sued Jolie and the others, on December 2, for copyright infringement. Filing his suit three weeks before the film came out in America on December 23, , the author accused Jolie and the companies of copying key elements of his book for In The Land of Blood and Honey. Jolie, who both wrote and directed the film, has said she got the idea for the movie from her travels to the region as a U. Goodwill Ambassador and what she learned about the Bosnian War of the s.
Angelina Jolie's directorial debut gets the Bosnian war right, but preaches its message clumsily. After all, the film, which takes place during the Bosnian conflict in the early s, is standard Academy catnip: a historical, war-time drama helmed by Hollywood royalty. And it's getting plenty of media attention. Jolie has appeared on The Charlie Rose Show and Anderson to field questions about what it's like to go from hair and makeup to yelling "action! Given all this, it's reasonable to wonder whether Jolie is in the game for a Best Director nod at the Oscars, or at the very least for a lesser nomination Best Song , perhaps? After seeing the film and Jolie's many plugs for it, I don't think she's doing any serious Oscar-baiting. Certainly, the reviews for her movie have been mixed enough that it hasn't shaped up to be much of a serious awards contender.
The film, Jolie's first commercial release as a director, depicts a love story set against the background of the Bosnian War. It opened in the United States on December 23, , in a limited theatrical release. They enjoy the evening together, but many of the patrons are killed and Danijel is badly injured when the club is destroyed by artillery fire, signifying the opening salvo of the Bosnian War. Some months later, Ajla and her sister Lejla prepare to flee the now besieged city, but their neighborhood is occupied by the Army of Republika Srpska before they can escape. The men are separated from the women, and then taken away to be executed, while Ajla and several other younger, more attractive women are taken away on buses to a Serb rape camp. In the camp, the soldiers instruct the women on what life will be like and then ask the women what sort of duties they can perform.