Brad Pitt to Star in 'The Operators', Continues to be Rebel with a Cause, But We Miss Old Pitt
Brad Pitt's a generally good guy. If we aren't counting that one time he left his wife for his on-screen co-star, the man really can't do anything wrong. He produced 12 Years a Slave, 2014's Best Picture winner and political drama. He volunteers his time in war-torn countries of Africa and other regions, he's adopted three kids with wife Angelina Jolie, and he chooses roles that often have more to do with his political ideals than his acting chops. So it's not a huge surprise to anyone that Brad Pitt is starring in The Operators , an Afghanistan military drama produced by Plan B and New Regency, the production duo behind 12 Years a Slave.
Australian talent David Michôd will write and direct the film based on Michael Hastings' bestselling expose with the same name. The tale chronicles the rise and fall of General Stanley McChrystal, the commanding general of international and U.S. forces in Afghanistan. And with Pitt attached, we can guess there's a strong political message buried deep within.
Pitt has a history of playing opinion-laced parts on the big screen, most recently as "the only nice White guy"/"White Jesus"/"Mr. Amish Beard" in 12 Years a Slave, where he was literally the only caucasian character with any balls big enough to challenge the notion of slavery — And the character's Canadian, of course. Chris Willman over at The Playlist said it best when he wrote:
“Executive producer Brad Pitt shows up in the last 20 minutes, looking vaguely Amish, and given that there hasn’t been a likeable white character since the opening minutes of the movie, it feels incongruous to see him suddenly come on screen and immediately give a speech about God-given racial parity. But by this time, we’re ready for the light at the end of the tunnel, even if his dialogue does seem right out of Lincoln.”
In Inglorious Basterds, Pitt plays the rebel leader of a group of soldiers during WWII who sets in motion a plan to assassinate Nazi leaders in France. His now infamous "Each and every man under my command owes me 100 Nazi scalps..." monologue set the sinister tone for the film. Pitt played a killer who was on the "right side" of murder.
In his latest flick, Fury, another WWII flick set to be released in November of this year. Pitt plays Wardaddy, a "battle-hardened army sergeant [who] commands a Sherman tank and her five-man crew on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. Wardaddy and his men face odds in their attempts to strike at Nazi Germany." A tough good guy fighting to defeat the bad guys against all odds? Why that sounds vaguely... familiar?
While we love Pitt in all of this roles, and while his penchant for playing the hot-headed good guy on a mission helps bring to light many important events in American history, we also mourn the old Pitt. The tuxedo wearing Pitt in Meet Joe Black. We miss Pitt as the ripped-to-an-inch-of-his-life weirdo in Fight Club. We miss him as the creepy old man/baby creature in Benjamin Button. We miss him as the eternally-hungry con man in The Oceans flicks, and heck — we even miss his goofy voicework in Happy Feet Two. You're a great guy, Brad Pitt, you are truly a Hollywood treasure — but we like to see you a little rough around the edges.