Brad Pitt has been turned down for jury duty in Los Angeles after being deemed too much of a distraction.
The 51-year-old actor and producer turned up to the Los Angeles criminal court on 11 December after receiving a summons, reports MailOnline. He was interviewed, along with a number of other potential jurors, but later found out that he had not been chosen to take part.
It is not unusual for Hollywood A-listers to find themselves summoned for court duty in LA. Potential jurors are picked randomly using driver’s licenses, state IDs and voter registration lists, and clerks often do not realise the notoriety of those invited to join juries until they turn up at court. Pitt himself was reportedly previously summoned for duty in 2003.
Tom Hanks was chosen to appear on the jury for a domestic violence court case in September last year, but the experiment proved a failure. The actor was dismissed after being approached by a female member of the LA city attorney’s office during a lunch break, in a clear infraction of court rules. The accused, who had been facing up to a year in jail, eventually walked away with just a $150 fine after defence lawyers argued Hanks’ presence had left court officials “starstruck”.
“You just can’t stick Brad Pitt in a jury box and expect 11 jurors to ignore him,’ Santa Clarita, California lawyer William R Lively told the Mail. “It’s only natural that those jurors would be watching to see how Brad reacts to what’s being said and that they could be influenced by his opinions once the jury goes behind closed doors to render a verdict.”
This article was written by Ben Child, for theguardian.com on Thursday 18th December 2014 15.49 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010