Angelina Jolie is looking forward to turning 50

Angelina Jolie has opened up about the joys of getting older in a rare interview.

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 09: Angelina Jolie attends the European premiere of "Maleficent: Mistress of Evil" at Odeon IMAX Waterloo on October 09, 2019 in London, England. )
(Image credit: (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Getty Images)

Speaking with British Vogue, the 45-year-old film star and producer shared her recent past ups and downs and why she's excited about the future. 

While many women in Hollywood bow to the pressures to hide their age, Angelina has no desire to freeze time. 

"I do like being older. I feel much more comfortable in my forties than I did when I was younger," Angelina said. 

Rather than adopting a "50 is the new 40" mentality, the Oscar-winning actor is diving headfirst into the next decade. 

"I'm looking forward to my fifties," she said. "I feel that I'm gonna hit my stride in my fifties." 

For Angelina, the future is filled with opportunity. With her wealth of on-screen experience, the esteemed actor has plenty to offer as a film producer. 

Having directed films and documentaries previously, the biopic of war photographer Don McCullin will be her next behind-the-camera role. Despite her impressive background, Angelina remains humble about her abilities. 

"I'm still very nervous," she admitted. "Even the other day, I thought to email him to ask him some questions, and I was composing my email to get it just right." 

Angelina is also confirmed to play a superhero in Marvel's Eternals later this year, alongside Salma Hayek and Richard Madden. 

"Running around in a gold bodysuit was not how I imagined my forties. But it's good crazy, I think," Angelina said. 

While she remains optimistic for the future, Angelina hasn't exactly had it easy over the last few years. She experienced several challenges over the past decade, including undergoing a preventative double mastectomy in 2013. Angelina made the medical decision after discovering she carried a genetic mutation, which gave her an 87% risk of breast cancer and a 50 percent risk of ovarian cancer. 

"Once I knew that this was my reality, I decided to be proactive and to minimize the risk as much I could," she wrote in a New York Times Op-Ed in 2013. 

While the Maleficent star tends to keep her personal life away from media scrutiny, she felt obliged to share her health issues with the public.

"I am writing about it now because I hope that other women can benefit from my experience." In openly discussing the operation, she sought to empower women in a similar position with the tools to make the right decision for them. 

Three years after the surgery, she and Brad Pitt separated in 2016 after five years of marriage. The breakdown of their twelve-year-relationship inflicted wounds on their family that still haven't fully healed. 

"The past few years have been pretty hard," Angelina admits. 

Angelina on a trip to the Louvre, Paris with her six children

(Image credit: Marc Piasecki/GC Images/Getty)

During their relationship, the powerhouse became parents to six children. In the wake of their divorce, Angelina prioritized their wellbeing more than ever before. 

“I’ve been focusing on healing our family. It’s slowly coming back, like the ice melting and the blood returning to my body,” she said. 

Hanging out with her teenage kids keeps Angelina feeling young every day, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. The pandemic has brought the family even closer, as they work together to navigate the endless obstacles of lockdown life. 

“I feel like we’re such a team,” she said. “It may sound clichéd, but you love and you try, and even if you burn the eggs, that doesn’t matter in the end.” 

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"Maybe it's just the young punk in me, but I like the spirit of the youth." 

Perhaps this contentment with aging comes from Angelina's youthful soul. She knows that getting older does not necessarily mean losing herself, especially if she can surround herself with younger people. 

"I believe they (younger people) can see right and wrong with more clarity. I see a lot of older people making excuses for certain behaviors, and it tends to be the younger person who is quicker to say, 'But this is simply wrong, and we stand against it.' I've wanted to remain that person." 

Angelina refuses to discard those values on the road to middle age, a destination that should be viewed as a celebratory landmark rather than the porch of a retirement home. As she moves closer to that point, she is reminded of her mother, Marcheline Bertrand, who passed away from breast cancer at 57. 

"Maybe because my mom didn't live very long, so there's something about age that feels like a victory instead of a sadness for me."