STAR STRUCK

Air­lie Beach abuzz af­ter visit from stars Brad Pitt and An­gelina Jolie

Whitsunday Times - - FRONT PAGE - By Sharon Small­wood

A SMALL crowd of about 100 fans and wait­ing me­dia caught a glimpse of Brad Pitt and An­gelina Jolie in the main street of Air­lie Beach on Tues­day night.

The world-fa­mous cou­ple were in the Whit­sun­days for the fi­nal two days of film­ing on An­gelina’s di­rec­to­rial de­but, the movie ‘Un­bro­ken’.

Lo­ca­tions at Fun­nel Bay and Ear­lando were used to repli­cate Hawaii where some of the film’s story is set.

When the cam­eras stopped rolling on Tues­day at the end of a 67-day shoot, the 130strong cast and crew headed to Air­lie’s Ship­wrecked Seafood Bar and Grill for their wrap party.

An­gelina and Brad ar­rived at the restau­rant in a white Mit­subishi Pa­jero at about 8.15pm.

An­gelina wore strappy, metal­lic gold stilet­tos along with black pants and a camisole, while Brad seemed more ca­sual in beige pants, a white, but­ton-up shirt and hik­ing boots.

De­spite a strong se­cu­rity pres­ence, the cou­ple went out of their way to greet lo­cal chil­dren and shake hands with fans.

Can­non­vale res­i­dent Corinn Stickland de­scribed the at­mos­phere on the street as “just elec­tric”.

“Just the buzz of ev­ery­one scream­ing – peo­ple say­ing ‘she touched me’ and the fact they es­pe­cially fo­cused on the kids – I thought it was great,” she said.

Other celebrity guests at the party in­cluded the Coen broth­ers Ethan and Joel, who are writ­ers on the film and English ac­tor Jack O’Con­nell, who plays the lead char­ac­ter Louis Zam­perini.

Ship­wrecked owner Ge­off Smith is no stranger to host­ing stars with the likes of Ni­cole Kid­man and Keith Ur­ban hav­ing pre­vi­ously graced his doors.

How­ever, even he con­ceded this was “just ex­tra­or­di­nary”.

“They’re prob­a­bly the most high pro­file cou­ple in the world, but I can’t imagine what it would be like to live like that – with the se­cu­rity and the cau­tion – to see all that was an eye-opener,” he said.

Mr Smith, whose en­tire staff served a stand-up style seafood buffet, said the word from the cast and crew was that “ev­ery­body loved the place”.

“They were blown away and wanted to come back – their im­pres­sion of the town was very pos­i­tive,” he said.

With so many ex­tra peo­ple in the re­gion since the week­end, Whit­sun­day mayor Jen­nifer Whit­ney es­ti­mated about $1mil­lion would have been in­jected into the lo­cal econ­omy.

She said Coun­cil had been work­ing hard be­hind the scenes, li­ais­ing with Screen Queens­land and the Queens­land Govern­ment, to se­cure the film­ing of some of the movie’s scenes here.

Brad Pitt and An­gelina Jolie flew out of the Whit­sun­day Coast Air­port shortly af­ter 9am yes­ter­day (Wed­nes­day).

News of their Whit­sun­day visit has al­ready spread world­wide.

Photo Sharon Small­wood / Whit­sun­day Times

IN TOWN: Fans were de­lighted to catch a glimpse of Hol­ly­wood celebri­ties An­gelina Jolie and Brad Pitt be­fore they dined at Ship­wrecked Seafood Bar and Grill in Air­lie Beach on Tues­day night.

NEW PRO­DUC­TION: The sign point­ing out the set lo­ca­tion at Fun­nel Bay where film­ing took place on Mon­day.

Photo Sharon Small­wood / Whit­sun­day Times

STAR AT­TRAC­TION: English ac­tor Jack O'Con­nell is star­ring in the movie 'Un­bro­ken' which An­gelina Jolie is di­rect­ing. He joined An­gelina, Brad Pitt and other cast and crew at Ship­wrecked Seafood Bar and Grill on Tues­day.

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