NICE, France (Reuters) - Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie has given birth to twins, a boy and a girl, her doctor at a hospital in southern France said on Sunday.
Oscar winner Jolie, 33, had the twins by caesarean section on Saturday evening at the Lenval hospital on the glamorous Promenade des Anglais waterfront drive in Nice. Actor Brad Pitt, the twins’ father, was at her side.
The girl, named Vivienne Marcheline, weighed 2.27 kg (5 lbs) while her brother, Knox Leon, weighed 2.28 kg. Marcheline was the first name of Jolie’s mother, also an actress, who died of cancer last year.
“The parents and the babies are in excellent health. Everything is fine,” Jolie’s doctor, Michel Sussmann, told Reuters. He said the c-section had been planned for a long time but the date was brought forward “for medical reasons.”
The doctor said Jolie was under epidural and was able to speak to a “perfectly calm” Pitt, 44, during the birth.
“They were very happy,” Sussmann said. Asked what Pitt was doing during the birth, he said: “He was looking at what I was doing. He was my assistant. No, that’s a joke.”
Jolie arrived at the Lenval hospital in late June by helicopter from the Provence villa where she and Pitt had been staying with their four other children — Maddox, Pax, Zahara and Shiloh.
A frenzied crowd of photographers and camera crews camped outside the building on Sunday, sweating in the humid heat.
Eager for the opportunity to promote himself and his city, Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi arrived at the hospital to sign the birth certificates in a smart suit and wearing full make-up for TV interviews despite the sweltering conditions.
“I congratulate the happy parents, the most famous couple in the world, who have chosen our city for this happy event ... The newborns are, history will not forget it, real Nicois, citizens of Nice,” a beaming Estrosi said, holding up the birth certificates in a blaze of camera flashes.
News of the celebrity births spread like wildfire in the streets and markets of Nice, where residents and tourists were keen to congratulate and advise the A-list parents.
“Sleep when the babies sleep. That is definitely my main advice to them,” said Nicole Stechmann, a German visitor.
Newspaper Nice Matin, which broke news of the birth on Sunday, reported the couple had sold exclusive rights to the first photographs of the twins to an unnamed U.S. magazine for $11 million and would give the money to charity.
Canadian tourist Heather Langfield said she was shocked at the hype surrounding the birth.
“It’s ridiculous. It’s just two people that just had two kids and they’re making far too much out of it,” she said.
The celebrity couple, known in the media as “Brangelina”, moved into a 17th century villa in Provence, France, earlier this year, with paparazzi descending on the village of Correns when news of their arrival leaked out.
Jolie, star of current hit movie “Wanted”, and Pitt, of “Ocean’s Eleven” fame, went public with their relationship after acting together in the 2005 film “Mr. & Mrs. Smith.”
(Additional reporting by Pierre Thebault in Nice, Crispian Balmer and Evelyn Sayan in Paris, Mike Collett-White in London; writing by Estelle Shirbon; Editing by Jon Boyle)
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