In an interview with NewNowNext, Jolie, 32 — who starred as a drag version of Swift in the “You Need to Calm Down” music video — discussed how the Grease star, 52, was one of many celebrities to mistake her for the “Me!” singer at the VMAs.
“Funny enough, when we were walking in the back [during the VMAs], where it’s mainly dancers and stuff, I got tired of saying, ‘No, I’m not her,’ so I just started hugging people! ‘So nice to meet you, too!’” Jolie said in the interview, which was published on Thursday, August 29.
Even Hadid, 24, one of Swift’s closest friends, was fooled by Jolie’s similarity to the 10-time Grammy winner.
“At the afterparty Gigi Hadid kept thinking I was Taylor — they’re really good friends,” she said. “The drunker we got, I guess the more Taylor I became for everyone!”
The Logo TV personality, who starred on Drag Race season 5, was involved in a viral moment after Travolta accidentally handed her the VMA for Video of the Year after Swift won for “You Need to Calm Down.” Clips of the moment show the Hairspray actor, who presented the award with Queen Latifah, trying to give Moon Person to Jolie, who extended her arm for a hug instead. While that happened, Swift was still at her seat, hugging those around her.
“I happened to make it to the podium first, and I definitely felt John Travolta gravitating to me,” Jolie told NewNowNext of the moment. “It was a very sweet and flattering mistake, and I like to think I did my job right and looked just like Taylor!”
She continued, “We told Taylor, and she was tickled and thought it was so funny. She joked and was like, ‘You totally should have went for it!’”
In an interview with Dallas-Fort Worth radio station Hot 93.3 on Thursday, August 29, Travolta explained that he was trying to find Swift on stage, which is what resulted in the VMAs mix-up.
“There’s so many people that bombarded the stage, that I was looking for [Taylor],” he said. “So the video has me trying to find her, and you know, I thought it was so funny the way it was interpreted — it was cool. I didn’t care.”
He continued, “Sometimes I fantasize what if I had given it to [Jolie]. That would have been awesome. … I should have just gone all the way with it.”
Jolie was one of several famous drag queens to star in Swift’s “You Need to Calm Down” music video, which also featured LGBTQ activists and celebrities like Laverne Cox, Ellen DeGeneres and Adam Lambert. In her scene, Jolie played a drag version of Swift and stood in a pageant-like line next to drag versions of other megastars, such as Adele and Beyoncé, as they waited for one of them to be crowned by RuPaul.
Along with Video of the Year, Swift also took home VMAs for Video for Good and Best Visual Effects for “You Need to Calm Down.”