Brad Pitt drew from relationship with father for Ad Astra role

The actor portrays an astronaut in search of his presumed dead father in the new space drama.

Brad Pitt was inspired by his impoverished father's fight to give him a "better life" when preparing for his role in Ad Astra.

The actor plays astronaut Roy McBride who goes in search of his presumed-dead father, played by Tommy Lee Jones, and he reveals his own experiences growing up helped him prepare for the emotional production.

"My individual experience is somewhat universal, in the fact that you know our parents, our universe, our gods, our first imprint on how to behave, react, feel in the world," he tells CNN. "And with that, to different degrees, some of us more than others, carry pain and confusion from that. I think it almost takes a lifetime to understand what was yours, and what was theirs."

Pitt's relationship with his own dad not only impacted his take on the role in director James Gray's film, but has shaped his approach to parenting his own six children, who he shares with ex-wife Angelina Jolie.

"My dad always said he wanted to give me a better life than he had coming from extreme poverty, and he did it. And it makes me think, as a dad, what do I have to offer that's better than I had, to my kids?" he added.

The Once Upon a Time in Hollywood star was also eager to address the film's various themes, including loneliness and grief.

"We've all experienced loss, we've all experienced great loneliness at times," he shares. "And we're good at packing that away and not dealing with it. Some of us are really good at it, at getting through it and coming out the other side as a more well rounded, I think more confident, more loving human being."

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