News / Arts & Entertainment

Art Imitates Life in Spy Thriller 'Salt'

Angelina Jolie stars as "Evelyn Salt" in Columbia Pictures' contemporary action thriller SALT.
Angelina Jolie stars as "Evelyn Salt" in Columbia Pictures' contemporary action thriller SALT.

Multimedia

Audio

Angelina Jolie stars in a new fast-paced espionage thriller about a top CIA operative accused of being a 'mole' - a Russian agent planted in America's intelligence network. Here's a look at the action-drama Salt.



"Do you think everyone is who they say they are?"


Evelyn Salt travels the world as an oil company executive. In reality she is a versatile spy, working undercover for the Central Intelligence Agency; but that changes when a Russian defector shows up at her Washington office claiming to have information about a 'mole' poised to commit an assassination.

"The name of the Russian agent is Salt. Evelyn Salt."
"My name is Evelyn Salt."
"Then you are a Russian spy."

In an instant "Salt" goes from trusted colleague to suspected traitor and, using skills honed in trouble spots around the globe, she escapes in a desperate attempt to clear her name.

"Somebody is setting me up."
"Don't make me put you down …I've got to bring you in, Salt. It's over. Face down. There's nowhere to run. Quit now."

The chase is on, pursued by the people who trained her, while  the clock is ticking on the planned assassination.

Angelina Jolie stars as "Evelyn Salt" in Columbia Pictures' contemporary action thriller SALT.
Angelina Jolie stars as "Evelyn Salt" in Columbia Pictures' contemporary action thriller SALT.

Angelina Jolie stars as Salt and calls the role a unique combination of daredevil action and realistic drama.

"I've been so fortunate in my career that I've been able to balance both and audiences have accepted me in dramas," Jolie says,  "and they've let me do big action movies and accepted me there.

"This time in Salt is the first time I've been able to really combine both. It's the first time I've been able to do an action movie based in reality and have a really nice depth of back-story and play with characters and accents and voices and all that …and also just jump of things and play."

The Salt character was originally written for a man (Tom Cruise was supposed to play the role); but Jolie is pleased that the gender change did not turn on the character's sexiness.

"We made a point not to use her sexuality or her femininity in the film in ways that is usually done in films, especially in this kind of genre," explains Jolie.  "I don't think the film is lacking in any way for it. That was a conscious choice we made to not let it become anything other than a really good spy movie with a tough spy …who happens to be a woman."

Chiwetel Ejiofor as "Peabody" in Columbia Pictures' SALT.
Chiwetel Ejiofor as "Peabody" in Columbia Pictures' SALT.

English actor Chewitel Ejiofor plays the counter-intelligence expert chasing after Jolie's Salt.

"What I liked about this character was that he was smart. He always seemed to me to be a good pursuer," Eljiofor says. "There was an in-built drama and tension in somebody who was so determined. It felt like that propels an audience along in the drama as well. With Angelina's character being so good at evading it felt like it needed both elements to push the drama and the tension of it."

Liev Schreiber co-stars as "Salt's" boss at the CIA and he calls the spy movie genre one of his favorites.

Liev Schreiber stars as "Ted Winter" in Columbia Pictures' contemporary action thriller SALT.
Liev Schreiber stars as "Ted Winter" in Columbia Pictures' contemporary action thriller SALT.

"I think they are so compelling to people because I think we all have this incredibly private persona that no one knows or will ever know," Schreiber says. "You're married for 20 years or work at the same place for 20 years and do the same thing every Thursday with your friends and yet you still feel like no one really knows you. I think that characters like Salt appeal to that interior, private place in people. 'You have no idea what I am capable of. You have no idea who I really am.' "

But what about when the real world intersects with the Hollywood version? Star Jolie says the recent arrests of Russian 'sleeper' agents living secret lives in America (exactly what her character is accused of in Salt) adds a twist the filmmakers never expected.

"There are obviously two feelings. One is our relationship with Russia as a country has improved and there are many, many things that are hinging on our relationship becoming more and more close and working together," notes Jolie. "So the political side or citizen in me wants to hope that it doesn't adjust anything relating to that. The side of me that makes a film about this situation thinks "my God, what timing. This is just bizarre." It's just strange. It feels like we're walking in some kind of odd reality."

Salt also features Polish actors Daniel Olbrychski as the mysterious defector who sets the plot in motion and Oleg Krupa as the Russian leader who is the assassin's target. The screenplay is by American writer Kurt Wimmer; and Australian Phillip Noyce directs the adventure that races through locations ranging from North Korea to Washington D.C. and New York City.

You May Like

Elusive Deal With Iran Could Yield Foreign Policy Legacy for Obama

A new Iranian leader -- and a strategic shift by the United States -- opens narrow window for nuclear agreement with Tehran More

Column: Saudi-Iran Meeting Could Boost Fight Against Islamic State

The fact that Iranians and Saudis are talking again does not guarantee a breakthrough, but it could make it easier to build a broad coalition against IS More

Thai Ruler Gives Top Cabinet Posts to Junta Inner Circle

Thailand's army chief has kept an iron grip on power as he extends the government, hand-picking an interim parliament that subsequently nominated him prime minister More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015i
X
Carol Pearson
August 30, 2014 7:14 PM
A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.
Video

Video Cost to Raise Child in US Continues to Rise

The cost of raising a child in the United States continues to rise. In its latest annual report, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says middle income families with a child born in 2013 can expect to spend more than $240,000 before that child turns 18. And sending that child to college more than doubles that amount. VOA’s Deborah Block visited with a couple with one child in Alexandria, Virginia, to learn if the report reflects their lifestyle.
Video

Video Chaotic Afghan Vote Recount Threatens Nation’s Future

Afghanistan’s troubled presidential election continues to be rocked by turmoil as an audit of the ballots drags on. The U.N. says the recount will not be completed before September 10. Observers say repeated disputes and delays are threatening the orderly transfer of power and could have dangerous consequences. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assault

After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Growing Business Offers Paint with a Twist of Wine

Two New Orleans area women started a small business seven years ago with one thing in mind: to help their neighbors relieve the stress of coping with a hurricane's aftermath. Today their business, which pairs painting and a little bit of wine, has become one of the fastest growing franchises across the U.S. VOA’s June Soh met the entrepreneurs at their newest franchise location in the Washington suburbs.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Week

The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Asian Bacteria Threatens Florida Orange Trees

Florida's citrus fruit industry is facing a serious threat from a bacteria carried by the Asian insect called psyllid. The widespread infestation again highlights the danger of transferring non-native species to American soil. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Aging Will Reduce Economic Growth Worldwide in Coming Decades

The world is getting older, fast. And as more people retire each year, fewer working-age people will be there to replace them. Bond rating agency Moody’s says that will lead to a decline in household savings; reducing global investments - which in turn, will lead to slower economic growth around the world. But experts say it’s not too late to mitigate the economic impact of the world’s aging populations. Mil Arcega has more.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.

AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Beyond Category

Pianist Myra Melford’s new CD “Life Carries Me This Way” features solo piano interpretations of drawings by modern artist Don Reich. She performs songs from the album, talks about turning art into music, and joins host Eric Felten in some Chicago boogie-woogie on "Beyond Category."