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George and Amal Clooney make rare appearance to share impassioned message about their work together

The husband-wife duo are partners in activism and parenting their twins Ella and Alexander

Actor George Clooney and lawyer Amal Clooney enter the Heavenly Bodies: Fashion & The Catholic Imagination Costume Institute Gala at The Metropolitan Museum on May 07, 2018 in New York City
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad Sanwari - New York
Senior WriterNew York
16 April 2024
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George and Amal Clooney made a rare public appearance together last week at the Skoll World Forum in Oxford, England to discuss the work of their Clooney Foundation for Justice.

The Hollywood star, 62, and his barrister wife, 46, co-founded the organization in late 2016 to "advocate for justice in courtrooms, classrooms, and communities around the world."

"It's nice to be in a room with people that get [expletive] done," George said at the start of their discussion, as per The Hollywood Reporter. He called the organization's work "holding people's feet to the fire," saying that it involved a lot of "failing and then finally succeeding," and deemed that his wife and their team were perfect for the job because they had the patience for it.

He passionately continued: "You can't guilt really [expletive] human beings into being good people…You can't get the Sultan of Brunei to act on his own. But what you can do is you can guilt the [expletive] out of people that do business with them."

George explained: "So you go to the cruise lines and gas lines and you go, 'The same [expletive] that's happening to the hotels that the Sultan of Brunei owns is going to happen to you.' And then they go to the Sultan of Brunei and go, 'Dude, what are you doing? Knock it off!' And that's how you actually get it to change."

Amal Clooney and George Clooney attend the World Premiere of "Ticket to Paradise" at Odeon Luxe Leicester Square on September 07, 2022 in London© Getty Images
Amal and George made an appearance at a panel at the Skoll World Forum in Oxford, England

Amal spoke about her time at law school in Oxford 24 years ago and explained specifically why their foundation used the term "waging justice," saying: "We use that verb very deliberately because it's a fight." 

MORE: Amal Clooney's giant $500k 'ethical' engagement ring from husband George

"And we think of it as a process where we have to gather our forces and gather allies and be really determined like you do when you're fighting a war."

George and Amal Clooney at The Boys in the Boat premiere© Getty Images
They spoke passionately about their advocacy and their work with the Clooney Foundation for Justice

She continued: "We're living through a time when we have more violent conflicts than at any time since the Second World War. Two billion people, a quarter of the world's population, is living through violent conflict, and we see women and children increasingly on the frontlines."

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Amal emphasized that a lot of conflicts weren't just taking place beyond borders, but closer to home as well, with George referencing the Arizona Supreme Court's recent decision to reinstate a law that bans nearly all abortions in the state. "You can't take anything for granted."

Amal Clooney wearing a white dress at the Clooney Foundation for Justice's 2023 Albie Awards© Getty Images
"You can't take anything for granted," Amal emphasized.

The father-of-two spoke about writing, directing, and starring in the 2005 Oscar-nominated politically charged Good Night, and Good Luck, recalling: "Good Night, and Good Luck I wrote because I was being called a traitor to my country by my own country for being against the war in Iraq."

MORE: Why George and Amal Clooney share a special bond according to expert

"The idea was anybody who spoke out against the war in 2003 was a traitor, and it wasn't really fun. They were picketing my movies, and all that kind of stuff."

"Storytelling is about finding a way to relate to people things that they can understand and not overwhelm them with peas and carrots."© Getty Images
"Storytelling is about finding a way to relate to people things that they can understand and not overwhelm them with peas and carrots."

"So we wrote it, because we liked the idea that it has to be entertaining, people have to be engaged," he said. "Storytelling is about finding a way to relate to people things that they can understand and not overwhelm them with peas and carrots."

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