A cycling paparazzo gets a flat, then scores a ride from the actress

By Ryan Pienciak
June 15, 2007 12:00 PM

You’ve heard about Angelina Jolie‘s good deeds around the globe – now add “roadside assistance” to her list.

Celebrity photographer James Ambler (who works for Splash News and Pictures) was continuing his routine of following the A Mighty Heart star around New York on his bike, when he suddenly ran over a nail and popped a flat on his two-wheeler.

Next thing he knew, Jolie’s car stopped and the driver asked Ambler if he wanted a ride.

The stunned shutterbug – whom Jolie as well as her kids had already nicknamed “Lance,” after cycling champ Lance Armstrong – then heard from Jolie herself, who said from the car, “Come on Lance, hop in.”

(To see Ambler talking about his experience with Jolie, see his interview on Splash’s site.)

Inside the vehicle, Jolie told him she appreciated the space some of the photographers were giving her children, he said. Asked afterwards how much time he actually spent in the car with her, Ambler replied that he didn’t really know. “Time stood still,” he said.

And as for how he’d describe his hostess on wheels: “Really down to earth, really lovely,” says Ambler – who soon found himself in a brand new position: as the target of the paparazzi lenses, for having had a brush with fame.