These days, Angelina Jolie may not be wearing blood vials or locking lips with her brother, but the 35-year-old mother-of-six insists she still has a wild side.
In a new USA Today interview, she says: "There's certainly a side of me that isn't completely …" Pausing to search for the right word, she then adds, "Sane. Or completely 'even' all the time. We all have our dark sides."'
In her case, Jolie says her dark side was exposed in the public eye.
"I grew up in front of everybody, really," she says. "The big years of exploration."
Jolie famously dived into a pool in her Golden Globes dress after winning for her role as a drug addicted model in 1998's Gia. And then there was all that bizarre Billy Bob stuff.
"There was a certain madness I was going through," says the actress. "I learned a lot about myself." But she isn't embarrassed. "People tend to sum up times in your life and simplify," she says. "I would say there's a way of being bold when you're young that seems very brave. … What's perceived as tough is a very funny thing. I think to be a parent is one of the scariest, boldest things to do, as opposed to, um, getting a tattoo. … Much more than jumping into a pool when you're 20."
She credits beau Brad Pitt with making her "a better person. I've learned so much from him, as you do when you come together with another person. You both make each other better. You both learn about the best of each other, and recognize the things where you're failing, or where you need to step up. When it's a great partnership, you really are patient with each other."
Pitt, 46, "has been a huge influence on me," she adds. "In all ways, from my parenting to my art, to … everything."
But at the end of the day, Jolie says only she knows herself best.
"My evolution, and any extremes in my evolution, has been my personality, out of the nature of what's inside me," says the actress. "I'm very unaware of my public self. I don't read anything written about me. I don't look at magazines. I only watch the films and premieres if I have to. I still haven't seen some of my films.
"If you become aware of a public self," she adds, "you're in danger of becoming a very artificial person."
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