Christmas at Doug Pitt’s place is pretty hectic. On a year the Pitt clan can all get together there will be 17 cousins, from babies to high school age, some adopted from Ethiopia, Cambodia, and Vietnam, the others born in Springfield, Missouri, all awaiting gifts from their favourite uncle. That's Brad Pitt. He gives the best presents.
“He’s hard to compete with, I’ll admit that,” the actor’s now famous little brother tells The Weekly. “I don’t even try now, but he’s a great uncle.”
He’s has been living in his favourite brother’s shadows for years but now Doug, officially the second most famous Pitt, is getting a taste of Tinseltown himself.
When I go to meet Doug at a swanky Sydney cocktail bar, there’s a queue to get to the guy.
I have to walk up a red carpet, be snapped by paparazzi, have a glass of champagne thrust in my hand before passing the ice sculpture of his face, and ask his minder if I can push through the press pack and meet him.
This is Doug Pitt’s party, and it’s clear he’s kind of a big deal.
So how’s he handling it?
“It’s just funny,” he says. “It’s really fresh, tongue-in-cheek, I’ve never done anything like this before and if I didn’t think I could have fun with it I wouldn’t have done it."
As the face of Virgin mobile, Brad’s little brother has been introduced to us as just a regular guy, and he is. He lives in a regular family home in Springfield with his three teenage children and his high school sweetheart Lisa who he married 22 years ago.
We’ve seen the commercials where the dorky 45-year-old hams it up for the camera in daggy shorts making dad jokes, pointing out the differences between his life and his famous brothers, but there are also many similarities.
Along with the stunning likeness, Doug, like his brother and soon to be sister-in-law Angelina, has family values and philanthropic interests at heart.
As well as running a networking firm which he has done for 22 years, the successful businessman runs water and sanitation projects in Tanzania where he is a goodwill ambassador, and a school-base youth program in Missouri called “care to learn.”
Doug credits his charitable instincts to his parents, who must have done something right to raise such successful kids with giving at their core. Younger sister Julie has added three Ethiopian adopted children to her two-child family.
But really, let’s cut to the chase, we want to know about Brad.
“There’s probably not much out there left that people don’t know about it, so if I had that nugget I’d probably keep it safe,” Doug says.
“I’m really proud of him, I think he’s done a phenomenal job not only in his career but just the way he handles himself. He thinks (the campaign) is hilarious.”
When it comes to Brad’s just as famous fiance Angelina, Doug loves her just as much.
“She’s great, wonderful. I love her to pieces.”