The following year he had a role in the legal drama Sleepers (1996), based on Lorenzo Carcaterra's novel of the same name.  The film received mixed reviews.  In the 1997 film The Devil's Own Pitt starred, opposite Harrison Ford, as the Irish Republican Army terrorist Rory Devany, a role for which he was required to learn an Irish accent.  Critical opinion was divided on his accent; "Pitt finds the right tone of moral ambiguity, but at times his Irish brogue is too convincing – it's hard to understand what he's saying", wrote the San Francisco Chronicle. The Charleston Gazette opined that it had favored Pitt's accent over the movie. The Devil's Own grossed $140 million worldwide, but was a critical failure. Later that year he led as Austrian mountaineer Heinrich Harrer in the Jean-Jacques Annaud film Seven Years in Tibet.  Pitt trained for months for the role, which demanded significant mountain climbing and trekking practice, including rock climbing in California and the European Alps with his co-star David Thewlis.  The film received mostly negative reviews, and was generally considered a disappointment. 
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On the heels of his estranged wife Angelina Jolie 's divorce filing after two years of marriage and more than a decade together, the Oscar winner has made a request to the public on behalf of his six children.