Copyright 2002 The Namibian

[ March 14th 2002 ]

Hollywood couple Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob Thornton, who became instant parents this week, were reunited - as a family - in Namibia on Tuesday. Jolie, who has been on location in the country since last week, on Monday took custody of a Cambodian baby boy the couple have adopted. Thornton joined his wife and child at Swakopmund on Tuesday.

Reuters reports that Jolie and Thornton have named their adopted son Maddox, and quotes the couple as saying the 7,5 month-old baby will be raised both in the United States and in Cambodia. "We are both very happy to have received Maddox in Namibia," the couple said in a brief statement released at Swakopmund yesterday.

Cid Swank, unit publicist of the film 'Beyond Borders' had not yet received the statement issued in Los Angeles by Thornton's personal publicist. "We are very grateful to have him in our lives," the two said in a joint statement released by Thornton's publicist, Reuters reports. Swank confirmed to The Namibian that Thornton was in Namibia and that he and the baby were on the set yesterday and "very happy to be with Jolie".

News of Jolie and Thornton's new son came from Jolie's father, Jon Voight, at a luncheon for Academy Award nominees on Monday. The couple first met the baby boy in an orphanage during a trip to Cambodia in November, and they "felt a connection" to him.

Over the past several months, the two parents - she a star of last year's hit 'Tomb Raider' and he of more recent films 'The Man Who Wasn't There' and 'Monster's Ball' - have had their backgrounds checked by Cambodian officials. They said Maddox finally received a Cambodian passport, and will spend the next few months with his adoptive parents in Namibia and Asia where Jolie will be working on 'Beyond Borders'.

While he has an American name, they will also give him a Cambodian name, the two said. "In May, we return home where his brothers Willie and Harry are very excited to meet him," they said. Willie and Harry are Thornton's sons from a marriage with his previous wife, Pietra.

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