Sep 212016

Unhappy Ending Of Brangelina

Both, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt were already mega stars when they co-starred in the 2005 “Mr. And Mrs. Smith”. The high-voltage encounter generated heat that interrupted Angelina’s single motherhood and Brad’s marriage to Jennifer Aniston. Shortly after divorce papers were filed, the unbridled passion of Brangelina was reported from different ends of the world.

There was love and romance. The couple had three biological children and adopted two children together. (In addition to Maddox 16 whom Angelina adopted before she and Brad became a couple. Brad adopted Maddox later.) As a couple they dealt with the death of Angelina Jolie’s mother. As a couple they have collaborated on movie projects and done a lot of humanitarian and charitable work. Finally, they confronted Angelina’s inherited cancer-prone genes and decided on a radical approach to protecting her from a potential cancer threat, together. Only the few highlights indicate that Brangelina had a strong and resilient relationship. They were happy as a couple and as a family. At the insistence of their children and after nearly 10 years of being together, they got married in 2014.

Only two years after officially tying the knot in France, Angelina Jolie filed for a divorce from Brad Pitt on September 19th 2016 in Los Angeles. Brangelina, one of the most talked about entertainment industry’s love stories has come to a sudden end. In the divorce filing Angelina cited irreconcilable differences and the need to preserve the family’s health as the main reasons. She’s asking for sole custody of their six children with a shared legal custody and visitation rights for Brad.

We all want to know what happened and considering the couple’s high visibility there is plenty of rumors surrounding the divorce. Most of us will never know the actual reason. In the context of today’s Brangelina divorce announcement, one has to wonder what inspired the movie “By the Sea” written and directed by Angelina Jolie which tells the story of a marriage in crisis…

I don’t know any more than you do, but to an uninvolved observer the divorce isn’t a surprise. Of the two spouses, it is Angelina who experienced the most dramatic changes: death of her mother, giving birth to three children, several radical surgeries. Having such powerful experiences changes a person and her priorities. It makes one feel like a survivor. It makes life more precious. It brings the importance of life, family and compassion to the forefront.

Personally, I believe that Angelina is ready for the next chapter of her life as a writer and director, but mainly as a humanitarian (perhaps even, a politician?) while Brad is set to continue his career as a movie star and a part-time humanitarian / environmentalist.

Angelina was born and raised in actors’ family. She became an actress herself early on. She spent much of her life “making pretend”. Especially over the last 10-12 years however she’s discovered not only the realm of the “real” but her power in it. She used her financial and star power to limit suffering, to help children and people in need as well as to preserve natural environment. She’s knows that she can have an impact as an individual, an artist and a role model. (She may have lost her passion for “make pretend” in the process…)

Unhappy Ending Of Brangelina

For Brangelina to survive would have taken two people equally committed to making a difference in the real world, away from the acting profession, Hollywood lime lights, glitz and glamour, and award ceremonies. But there are transformative experiences in every person’s life that can’t be shared even with the person we truly love. Angelina’s experiences transformed and made her ready for the next stage of life. Brad witnessed her experiences and watched Angelina undergo significant transformation while he himself remained… a movie star. There is, of course, nothing wrong with that. But magic survives only if and when two people are willing to transform and change their priorities, TOGETHER.

(There are rumors that Brad Pitt had an affair. Did he have an affair with Marion Cotillard – his “Allied’’ co-star – while filming in London? Marion Cotillard, who is expecting a second child with her partner, denies it. Whether there was an affair – with whom? – or not, isn’t relevant. A couple’s bond isn’t limited to the bedroom. The bond can’t be threatened by an outsider. The bond dies at home. Whether or not there is / was an affair, the breakup still boils down to irreconcilable differences. Once shared priorities aren’t shared anymore, the “magical” bond is broken.

New rumors imply that Brad Pitt has been an unfit father. It’s hard to believe that Angelina would have tolerated his alleged “child abuse” for so many years…

These are rumors, nothing more.)

Brangelina was a fairytale to Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt and to us. It may be an unhappy ending of Brangelina, the artificial construct. It is a new era of power for a woman of substance.

And what are your thoughts?

Anything L.A. Magazine’s Entertainment Editor / I. Sturm


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Jul 052016

Healthy Homes Featured Article Anything L.A. Magazine

We say “Home, sweet home.” and “My home is my castle”. Home is the center of family life and the ultimate refuge from the elements, strangers and the world. We perceive home as the place of ultimate safety.

Sadly, most of our homes aren’t as safe as we believe. The building materials, paints, synthetic floor coverings, pressed wood cabinets, etc. exude fumes that pollute the indoor air we, our family and pets are inhaling. If you find the opening statement shocking, most fire victims today don’t succumb to the fire itself; they die from toxic fumes’ inhalation. I’m tempted to say that the worst offenders are houses built in the 1940’s or 50’s (led paint!) but that wouldn’t be true. Toxic building materials are in popular use today, too: just think of the recent laminate flooring “scandal”.
That’s not the whole story, yet. Conventionally built homes aren’t healthy for their inhabitants; they are also destructive to the ecosystem. Traditional energy sources continue to deplete precious natural resources and further contribute to pollution and water contamination. Ever-growing demand for building materials – and today, natural building materials such as stone and wood – calls for more exploitation of natural environment.

Steps have been taken to reduce the indoor pollution caused by toxic building materials. Low VOC paints contain fewer chemicals than conventional paints and dry causing less indoor air pollution. Popularization of solar panels, better water management, all of these help reduce the negative impact our homes have on human health and the environment. Is it enough? In a word: no. (Check the statistics on asthma, allergies and other environment-related conditions. Their numbers continue rising.)

Out of the demand for healthy, environmentally-conscious homes arose a brand new industry: homes designed specifically to be health-promoting and environmentally-responsible.

One of the pioneers of the emerging industry is California’s own LEED PlatinumLiving Homes ( Living Homes is the builder of the first LEED Platinum home (The Leed standards set by the US Green Building Council grade projects on their design, safety of building materials used, water and energy efficiency. Platinum is the highest standard a project can be awarded.) and has eleven more Living Homes in production destined for the prestigious LEED Platinum designation.

Even though similar attempts have been made in the past, most of them were intended solely for consumers with very deep pockets. By prefabricating the homes, Living Homes managed to make healthy homes more affordable. The company and its CEO, Mr. Steve Glenn believes that good health and sustainable planet are a right not a privilege: their price range reflects it.

What are Living Homes?

Designed by top architects, Living Homes are prefabricated from non-toxic building materials that are also environmentally-sustainable. The homes are available in standard as well as customizable designs and have drastically smaller ecological impact than conventional homes.

Living Homes’ newly completed six, cutting-edge design, single family homes in Atwater Village include LEED Platinum certified level environmental program and healthy building materials.
With an eye on health and environment the homes have energy-saving appliances and are solar-ready. Many materials used in construction and the interior are reclaimed. To preserve water there are low-flow fixtures and a system in place for grey water reuse. To ensure clean indoor air, the new Living Homes in Atwater Village are free of formaldehyde and VOC paint.

Living Homes has teamed up with Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation ( in raising funds and developing health-supporting, environmentally sustainable homes in underserved communities across the country, most notably in New Orleans, Newark, NJ, Kansas City, MO and on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation.
Recently introduced line of low-cost C6 Living Homes series developed in collaboration with Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation is also based on LEED® Platinum level environmental program and Cradle-to-Cradle CM inspired materials. (Cradle-to-Cradle CM is an environmental certification program that awards products developed without toxic chemicals the highest standard ratings.)

Not surprisingly, Living Homes are loved by their owners. They have also earned numerous awards, most recently:

March 16, 2016
Make It Right LivingHome – Architizer A+ Awards

September 15, 2015
Make It Right LivingHome – 2015 Builder Design Awards

October 22, 2015
Our LivingHome RK7.2 received LEED Gold in Canada!

April, 2014
LivingHomes RK1 named one of “The World’s Coolest Prefab Houses.”

February 2010
The LivingHome, Newport Beach wins two 2009 Green Dot Awards; 1st place for Design and 2nd place for Build.

October, 2009
The first LivingHome wins Eco-Structure’s 2009 Evergreen Award in the “Greenhouse” category.


We and our homes should coexist with natural environment, not exploit it. By combining state-of-the-art design (nothing like the McMansion!) with a commitment to human health and environmental sustainability, Living Homes brings the concept of harmonious coexistence with Nature within our reach.

Written by Anything L.A. Magazine’s Business Reporter, Jason Berberyan

Aug 282014

After nine years, the fairytale romance of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt culminated in a long anticipated wedding. The setting was Chateau Miraval in France. The ceremony took place on Saturday August 23rd 2014. All six of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt’s children participated in the wedding ceremony. The wedding was an intimate affair attended by family and friends of the couple.

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt Got Married

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt Got Married! (The photo is believed to be public domain and is published with no intent of disrespecting anyone’s rights, including possibly copyrights.)

The sparks between Angelina Jolie and – then married – Brad Pitt flew when they costarred in “Mr And Mrs Smith” in 2005. Apparently, the sparks evolved into a fire with a staying power as the pair’s romance remained strong in a relationship which included elements of a fairytale as well as Angelina’s preventive mastectomy.

So, as Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt Got Married, says congratulations to the newlyweds! We’ve been following your love story from the sidelines and it affirmed our belief that a fairytale can come true. Many blessings to you and your family!