Brad Pitt Face Blindness?
By CNN Staff
(CNN) — It seems that anytime Brad Pitt speaks, the world stops to listen, and his latest interview with Esquire has been no exception.
The 49-year-old star, who’ll next appear in June’s “World War Z,” covers the magazine’s June/July issue. As you’ve probably noticed, bits and pieces of the profile have been floating around the Web all week.
Some of it isn’t all that new: We’ve heard him talk previously about how he was stagnant 10 to 15 years ago but made a conscious decision “not to squander my opportunities,” as he reiterated to Esquire in the interview. He also reminds us of how super-content he is in his new life, raising six kids with fiancée Angelina Jolie.
But there were a few revelations including a potentially startling medical one. Here, we recount the top five things we’ve learned so far from the interview:
1. Pitt won’t recognize you
Pitt told Esquire that he has such a hard time remembering the faces of those he meets, he thinks he might suffer from prosopagnosia, or face blindness, though he has not been tested or diagnosed with the disorder. We’re not sure whether the actor was being facetious or not, but he said even having a “real conversation” doesn’t help.
“So many people hate me because they think I’m disrespecting them,” Pitt told the magazine. “I took one year where I just said, This year, I’m just going to cop to it and say to people, ‘OK, where did we meet?’ But it just got worse. People were more offended. …You get this thing, like, ‘You’re being egotistical. You’re being conceited.’ But it’s a mystery to me, man. I can’t grasp a face, and yet I come from such a design/aesthetic point of view. I am going to get it tested.”
(For more on face blindness, check out this 2011 video of CNN’s Sanjay Gupta speaking with Dr. Oliver Sacks, a famed neurologist who has face blindness. Occasionally, Sacks said he had trouble recognizing his own face.)
On Thursday, Carnegie Mellon University invited Pitt to have his brain imaged and be examined by Marlene Behrmann, a neuroscientist, professor of psychology and a member of the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition within the university’s Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
“Carnegie Mellon is one of the very few places that can both test for face blindness and perform the brain imaging in our state-of-the-art imaging center,” Behrmann said in a press release.
2. Pitt’s daughter Zahara doesn’t appreciate her parents’ PDA
Pitt’s relationship with Jolie is one of constant speculation, but those hungry for intimate details aren’t often satisfied. This month, however, they have been, thanks to Pitt’s friend Frank Pollaro.
After getting permission from the actor to speak openly, Pollaro told Esquire that he once walked into the Pitt-Jolie home just in time to hear the couple’s adopted daughter, Zahara, protesting her parents’ apparently frequent displays of affection.
“I walked in and Angie was standing there and Zahara walked up and said, ‘Daddy, you’re not going to start making out with Mommy again, are you?’ And it’s like that,” Pollaro said.
3. He tries to avoid on-screen sex scenes now that he’s with Angelina
That wasn’t the only reveal Pollaro offered. The chatty friend said that Pitt tries to avoid “sexy scenes with other women since he’s met Angelina,” whom he’s been with for years and became engaged to in April 2012. “He’s crazy about her, and she’s the same way about him,” Pollaro continued. “No matter how hard he’s working, if one of those kids runs by the window he’ll get out of his chair and give them a kiss. And I don’t think I’ve ever seen Angie without one of those children in her arms.”
4. He doesn’t have a ton of friends
We’ve seen Pitt pal around with the likes of George Clooney and we now know of Pollaro, but it seems Pitt’s buddy list might not extend far beyond that.
“I have a handful of close friends and I have my family, and I haven’t known life to be any happier,” the actor said. “I’m making things. I just haven’t known life to be any happier.”
5. His home life sounds about as chaotic as you think it is
“I always thought that if I wanted to do a family, I wanted to do it big,” he says. “There’s constant chatter in our house, whether it’s giggling or screaming or crying or banging. I love it. I love it. I love it. I hate it when they’re gone. I hate it. Maybe it’s nice to be in a hotel room for a day — ‘Oh, nice, I can finally read a paper.’ But then, by the next day, I miss that cacophony, all that life.”
Esquire’s full interview with Pitt lands on newsstands May 31.