The couple attended a press conference to discuss A Mighty Heart – in which she stars and he produces, through his Plan B production company.
Jolie admitted she had trepidations about taking on the project and the role of Mariane Pearl, whose husband, Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, 38, was killed by Islamic militants in Pakistan in February 2002. (Actor and Oscar-nominated Capote screenwriter Dan Futterman plays Daniel.) “I was very, very nervous to get it right,” said Jolie.
And the outcome? “Mariane seems to think we’ve done all right.”
Pitt, 43, and Jolie, 31, are staying at the exclusive Hotel du Cap, in a villa with their four children: Maddox, 5; Zahara, 2; Pax, 3; and Shiloh, who turns 1 this coming Sunday.
“We got here yesterday, and we had a beautiful day with our kids,” said Jolie, who flew in from the Czech Republic, where she is filming the movie Wanted, with Morgan Freeman. “We’ve been playing with them since the moment we landed, and we plan to go home to them as soon as we are done with this.”
As for her five-star hotel in France’s Cap d’Antibes. “It’s also a beautiful place, and we have an opportunity to enjoy it with our family and enjoy it as friends,” said Jolie.
Pitt said he was captivated by the Pearl story from the moment he started following it on CNN. “It was our goal to see this thing through,” said Pitt. “And to fight hatred.”
Jolie said that despite the serious nature of the film, which tracks Daniel’s kidnapping and his wife’s desperation to save him, she remains able to smile in her downtime. “I am still capable of being silly and having fun,” she said.
At one point, Pitt humorously referred to his partner as “what’s-her-name” (when the press conference’s mediator unexpectedly asked him to comment on a question previously directed to Jolie). He also stressed his and her aim of working together to help improve the planet.
“As a father, too, I look at my kids and realize they will inherit this world,” said Pitt. “And we want to do everything we can to throw our weight in and make it a little bit better.
After the news gathering, PEOPLE asked Pitt how he was finding Cannes. “I’m enjoying it very much, man,” he replied.