Brad Pitt, who plays Jesse James in his latest film, says being a celebrity in America today is not that much different from in the days of the legendary outlaw - then and now, there was all that hype.
Pitt, who was at the Venice Film Festival to promote "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford," has served as endless grist for the tabloid mill since he hooked up with Angelina Jolie.
"People have asked me today about the celebrity angle," the 43-year-old Pitt told Associated Press Television in an interview Monday, "and certainly that's one aspect of the film - that's not the main focus of the film."
Pitts mused that James was one of America's biggest celebrities at that time, "and the funny thing to me is that it doesn't seem that different today as it was then, in the sense that a lot of it was manufactured, a lot of it was sensationalized, very little of it was based on truth and even after his death, like we just saw with Anna Nicole Smith, the melee that ensues from it." (Smith, a model and former Playboy Playmate, died in February at 39, setting off a frenzy of media coverage.)
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Being a celebrity is "really quite similar, there's just more of it today," Pitt said.