It’s not surprising to see how some celebrity look-alikes can make a career out of their resemblance to a famous person. If you’ve ever seen a really good Elvis or Michael Jackson impersonator—and I mean a good one—you know just how eerie the feeling is.
The same questions run through our minds: is this impersonator secretly related to the celebrity they look like? How would the celebrity react if they saw themselves reflected in a complete stranger?
Besides the fact that this is the perfect plot to a Parent Trap-like movie where a celebrity lookalike takes the place of the famous person and learns that fame is actually really hard, there are some downsides. People stop you on the street all the time, so you have the random and awkward recognition but without the money and success.
Melissa Brazen can confirm all of this. The mother of two from Hales Corner, Wisconsin looks so much like Angelina Jolie that the internet caught on and many news outlets reached out to her with questions.
Melissa, 34, lives with her partner and children and works as an optical manager.
Every now and then, however, her normal domestic life gets shaken up a bit when people stop her on the street for an autograph and a picture.
The mother of two told the Daily Mail that she’s very self-conscious about her appearance, like any other woman.
But she also says that she can’t deny that the comparison to Angelina Jolie boosted her self-esteem quite a bit.
“I do get recognised. I get stared at quite a lot. I find it funny. It’s quite surreal. She has always been an idol of mine. It’s crazy to be compared to her,” Melissa told The Sun.
She said that she considers herself a normal girl, down to earth and not one to enjoy a spotlight, so the attention can feel overwhelming at times.
“My personality is completely different but a lot of people say I really look like her.” she told The Sun.
What isn’t there to love about the comparison? Not only does Angelina Jolie have some of the most celebrated films out there, she’s also an extraordinary human being.
Even Melissa agrees with that sentiment: “I have looked up to her quite a lot. I like her movies but I admire her the most for her humanitarian work.”
The media seems to focus more on Angelina Jolie’s personal life, but it’s her humanitarian work and activism that make up her life’s work.
Starting all the way back in 2001, Angelina Jolie became a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. As of today, she has visited and aided displaced people in over 30 countries.
“It’s always hard to see decent people, families, living in such difficult conditions,” Jolie said during a visit to Chad. “What is most upsetting is how long it is taking the international community to answer this crisis.”
In the true spirit of someone who embraces being compared to someone like Angelina Jolie, Melissa Brazen has found a way to make the best out of her situation.
Melissa has dressed up as Angelina Jolie’s iconic role in Maleficent for the Bristol Renaissance Faire. “A lot of people were coming up to me,” Melissa laughed.
How does her partner feel about Melissa being the perfect doppelganger to Angelina Jolie? “I think he does get a little bit jealous he would never say it,” she admits.
The attention has reached Melissa at a personal level. Her instagram has gained a wave of new followers after the newfound global attention from people making the comparison between her and Jolie.