Angelina Jolie Dazzles Fans at San Diego's Comic-Con

Live on stage -- and in new interviews with the press -- the Salt star gives some candid soundbites

Onetime under-the-radar nerdfest Comic-Con has become the annual go-to destination for Hollywood's biggest stars to face their thrilled fans. This week, Angelina Jolie stopped by to do just that. In a sexy leather jacket and black skirt, she wowed nearly 7,000 excited attendants, joining a panel to talk about her spy thriller Salt, opening today. It's her second time at the San Diego event; in 2001, she promoted her video game-turned-movie, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider.

Telling the crowd about her film's daring stunts (the ones that won over her kids), she recalled one painful stunt in particular, according to E!. "I thought I'd had a concussion," she said, in describing how she couldn't immediately hear after injuring her head. "But I had forgotten that I had my earplugs in from (shooting) the gun!"

Guns weren't all she armed herself with. "I got to play with just about everything," she recalled, "including using a fire extinguisher in a way I'd never used it." But, she notes, "Hand-to-hand combat was our weapon of choice, to do everything down and dirty." She added, "I think this is a better action movie than the ones I've done." 

Meanwhile, in promoting Salt in the press this week, the Oscar winner talked to People about how fast her six kids are growing up! "I'm not ready for them driving, dating. I'm not ready for any of it," Jolie admits, revealing her parenting plan: "To just have a really, really great relationship with our children, so when they hit that time that they don’t want to talk to us, we've instilled some good values already, because it will be too late as they're walking out the door."

Jolie certainly recalls her own youth. In a new USA Today interview, she not only identifies with her intense Salt character ("There's certainly a side of me that isn't completely...sane...or completely 'even' all the time," she says, adding, "We all have our dark sides") but she looks at her own past with clarity.

"I grew up in front of everybody, really," Jolie says. "The big years of exploration....There was a certain madness I was going through....I learned a lot about myself."

"People tend to sum up times in your life and simplify," she adds. "I would say there's a way of being bold when you're young that seems very brave....I think to be a parent is one of the scariest, boldest things to do, as opposed to, um, getting a tattoo....Much more than jumping into a pool when you're 20."

Of course, her fans love hearing about life with Brad Pitt, and she candidly tells USA Today, "He's definitely made me a better person. I've learned so much from him....You both make each other better. You both learn about the best of each other, and recognize the things where you're failing, or where you need to step up. When it's a great partnership, you really are patient with each other." She affirms that  "he's been a huge influence on me. In all ways, from my parenting to my art, to....everything."

And to confirm that she's experiencing genuine contentment these days, she adds, "I think I'm finally living completely free and brave. I'm bolder now....I was a lot less when I was younger."

Jolie then confesses a blind spot: "I'm very unaware of my public self. I don't read anything written about me. I don't look at magazines. I only watch the films and premieres if I have to. I still haven't seen some of my films."

"If you become aware of a public self," she reasons (very admirably we think), "you're in danger of becoming a very artificial person."

What do you think Angelina Jolie likes more, being a movie star or being a mom? Chime in below!

Like This? Read These:
- PHOTOS: Angelina Jolie: A Look Through the Years
- Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie Triumph in Tabloid Lawsuit
- New Book Says Angelina Came Between Ethan & Uma 
- Brad and Angelina Will Wed -- If Kids Insist
- PHOTO: Knox & Vivienne Jolie-Pitt's First Two Years: Double the Fun!

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