Angelina Jolie's post-split interview has stirred a major controversy and surprisingly the uproar has got nothing to do with Brad Pitt.
Speaking with The Vanity Fair magazine, the Hollywood actress — who graces its September cover — opened up about the "traumatising" casting procedure of her directorial venture, First They Killed My Father: A Daughter Of Cambodia Remembers.
Based on the experiences of Cambodian author and human rights activist Loung Ung, the biographical thriller narrates her struggles during the ruthless Khmer Rouge regime.
However, what appears to have shocked fans was Jolie's description of the audition process, as her team sought the perfect lead for the film — someone who has seen real hardships.
Jolie revealed that the casting directors searched "orphanages, circuses, and slum schools" until they found the perfect star — child actor Sareum Srey Moch for the role.
They "set up a game, rather disturbing in its realism: they put money on the table and asked the child to think of something they needed the money for, and then to snatch it way," reads the magazine article. "The director would pretend to catch the child, and the child would have to come up with a lie."
About casting Srey Moch, Jolie added, "Srey Moch was the only child that stared at the money for a very, very long time. When she was forced to give it back, she became overwhelmed with emotion. All these different things came flooding back."
But, the "cruel" casting revelations has met with severe criticism, as users took to social media to voice their disappointment.
"Angelina Jolie is crazy. What a cruel psychological game to play with impoverished children," one user tweeted, while another wrote, "Why in the HELL were Angelina Jolie and Co traumatizing poor Cambodian children for 'casting'? How is this applause worthy?"
"Hey, @UN? Have you seen this @VanityFair story about what Angelina Jolie does to poor children? Still think she's a good Special Envoy?" another critic asked.
"Angelina Jolie is cancelled," a sarcastic tweet read, "Rich famous people that like importing children from impoverished areas to adopt are fucking weird anyway."
"Angelina Jolie is f******g sick. Impoverished children shouldn't be subjected to psychological torture like this!" and "I thought Angelina Jolie was a humanitarian & protector of children. If true this is beyond appalling. Abusive & cruel," were some other reactions.
Apart from the auditioning process, the actress also talked about the powerful atmosphere on the set of the film.
"There wasn't a person who was working on the movie who didn't have a personal connection," she said. "They weren't coming to do a job. They were walking in the exodus for the people whom they had lost in their family, and it was out of respect for them that they were going to re-create it."
"It completed something for them," the actress added.