Yet another reason to love Brad Pitt...
The handsome, famously philanthropic actor issued a statement on Monday explaining exactly what went down when Ukranian journalist Vitalii Sediuk attacked him on the red carpet at the L.A. premiere of his fiancée Angelina Jolie's new movie, Maleficent, last Wednesday. More importantly, the 50-year-old World War Z star revealed that the incident bothered him so much because he feels these types of antics could potentially ruin the movie premiere experience for fans moving forward.
"I was at the end of the line signing autographs, when out the corner of my eye I saw someone stage-diving over the barrier at me," Pitt said in a statement to People. "I took a step back; this guy had latched onto my lapels. I looked down and the nutter was trying to bury his face in my crotch, so I cracked him twice in the back of the head — not too hard — but enough to get his attention, because he did let go. I think he was then just grabbing for a hand hold because the guys were on him, and he reached up and caught my glasses.
"I don't mind an exhibitionist," he added, "but if this guy keeps it up he's going to spoil it for the fans who have waited up all night for an autograph or a selfie, because it will make people more wary to approach a crowd."
Sediuk's proven to be quite a nuisance for Hollywood. In the last three years, the man much of the media has dubbed a "prankster" has attempted to kiss Will Smith, steal a Grammy statuette from Jennifer Lopez as she was presenting, and, just last month, climbed under America Ferrera's gown at the Cannes Film Festival.
Regarding the Cannes encounter, Pitt issued a warning: "And he should know, if he tries to look up a woman's dress again, he's going to get stomped."
Sediuk, for his part, insists that he was simply trying to give Pitt a hug at the Maleficent premiere and that his "stunts" are just for fun. In fact, he's hoping that celebrities learn a lesson from all of his shenanigans.
"So, I am a normal guy. I am not crazy," Sediuk told the AP. "I do this for entertainment, but we can make a lot of stories out of one simple incident, or a prank. Entertainment industry can make it look entertainment. Serious news can talk about security, about access and celebrity, about giving credential to media outlets. So there's so much we can talk about the prank, and why I do it. But, as I say: My primary purpose is entertainment, fun and, obviously, not hating, offending someone, or putting in a crazy position."
At the Maleficent premiere, Sediuk was quickly hauled off by the Los Angeles Police Department. But if he had actually had the chance to talk to Pitt or Ferrera or other stars, what would he say?
"I would say to them, 'Don't get offended at me. Don't get mad at me," Sediuk said. "And just to be thankful that I show it's easy to get access to you and maybe you have to tighten security, and maybe you have to talk to people in a different way — maybe to be more cautious, may to have a time. Obviously, I don't want to say, 'Don't talk to fans.' But maybe cautious."
Sediuk shouldn't be a problem in the near future, though. He pleaded no contest to misdemeanor battery on Friday in L.A. where he was ordered to stay away from Pitt, Jolie, and two Hollywood locations that often host star-studded events. Additionally, Sediuk was sentenced to three years of probation and a year of therapy.
Not only that, but Sediuk has pledged to put an end to his antics, in part, because of those legal problems.
"I wouldn't joke with the judge and I took them seriously because one thing you do for entertainment and other thing when you have legal problems," he told Extra's Mario Lopez. "And I have to tell you they're so many consequences I experience now."
Besides, Sediuk added, "No more big stars and events left for me so probably I will retire."