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Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s divorce, to the surprise of many, is still ongoing. The pair, who first met on the set of Mr. & Mrs. Smith in 2004 and got married in 2014, have been in and out of court for almost four years as a result of their drawn out divorce case. With new information being released in court documents, Gossip Cop is looking back at the long timeline of Pitt and Jolie’s divorce.

Why Are Brad Pitt And Angelina Jolie Divorcing?

Angelina Jolie shocked the world by filing for divorce from Brad Pitt on September 20, 2016. The now-exes seemed to most to have a fairy-tale life, but their happily ever after came screeching to a halt in a dramatic fashion. Though both Pitt and Jolie have played coy about the reasons behind their sudden split, they’ve hinted in interviews about why they saw no other way forward as a family.

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt with two of their kids in a Budapest park

Brad Pitt’s Reasons

In 2017, Pitt sat down with GQ Style for a revealing interview in which he discussed his life in the aftermath of his separation from Jolie. Pitt admitted that he had a serious drinking problem that he’d had to come to terms with, though he didn’t say whether that drinking had an effect on his marriage to Jolie. “I had to step away for a minute. And truthfully I could drink a Russian under the table with his own vodka. I was a professional. I was good,” Pitt explained, adding that the reason he stopped was because he didn’t “want to live that way anymore.”

Pitt also talked about the way he handles his emotions and what effect his upbringing had on the way he was with his own children. “I grew up with a Father-knows-best/war mentality — the father is all-powerful, super strong — instead of really knowing the man and his own self-doubt and struggles,” Pitt recalled. “And it's hit me smack in the face with our divorce: I gotta be more. I gotta be more for them. I have to show them. And I haven't been great at it.”

Although Pitt understandably didn’t delve too deeply into the details of his divorce from Jolie, he did acknowledge that the two of them were committed to keeping the proceedings as free of “animosity” and “vitriolic hatred” as possible. “I just refuse. And fortunately my partner in this agrees,” he said, later adding, “I see it happen to friends — I see where the one spouse literally can't tell their own part in it, and is still competing with the other in some way and wants to destroy them and needs vindication by destruction, and just wasting years on that hatred. I don't want to live that way.”

Brad Pitt wearing a black tuxedo with a crowd of photographers behind him

In the interview, Pitt also alluded to the fact that his first instinct after Jolie filed for divorce was to “cling on,” but then the old cliche, “If you love someone, set them free,” came to his mind. “Now I know what it means, by feeling it. It means to love without ownership. It means expecting nothing in return.” It’s easier said than done, Pitt admitted, but it was an important first step he had to take to accept his new reality.

Angelina Jolie’s Reasons

Though she’s similarly reticent to talk about her divorce from Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie has recently opened up a little more about what her mental state was like before she and Pitt separated. The Maleficent actress spoke with French outlet Madame Le Figaro, an interview that was transcribed into English by LaineyGossip, admitting that she felt “lost" near the end of her relationship with Pitt. “It was complicated, I didn't recognize myself anymore, and I'd become, how do I say this, smaller, insignificant, even if I didn't show it. I was profoundly, deeply sad, I was hurt,” Jolie admitted.

In her Vanity Fair interview from 2017, Jolie revealed that “things got bad” in her marriage to Pitt in the summer of 2016 before slightly walking that comment back, “I didn’t want to use that word… Things became ‘difficult.’” When asked whether or not her family’s lifestyle, where they often traveled between various countries, contributed in a negative way to her marriage, Jolie swiftly and vehemently denied it. “[Our lifestyle] was not in any way a negative. That was not the problem,” the actress emphatically stated. “That is and will remain one of the wonderful opportunities we are able to give our children... They’re six very strong-minded, thoughtful, worldly individuals. I’m very proud of them.”

Angelina Jolie with three of her children, Shiloh, Vivienne, and Zahara at the Malificent premier
(Featureflash Photo Agency/Shutterstock)

Still pretty fresh from her separation from Pitt, Jolie was totally focused on her children and how they were handling not just the divorce, but other mishaps in life that led to the divorce. “We’re all just healing from the events that led to the filing... They’re not healing from divorce. They’re healing from some... from life, from things in life.”

Although she and Pitt were still battling things out in court at that point in time, Jolie insisted, “We care for each other and care about our family, and we are both working towards the same goal.” Much like Pitt, her focus was more on what could be done to help their children.

Angelina Jolie wearing a black dress and looking over her shoulder at the photographer

When Did They Get Divorced?

Angelina Jolie first filed for divorce from Brad Pitt in 2016 and the court proceedings regarding the case are still ongoing. Despite the fact that the divorce has not been finalized quite yet, the judge in their case dissolved the ex-spouses’ marriage in 2019, allowing them to declare themselves legally single while still hashing out other details in court, like custody and other financial issues relating to their divorce.

Why Aren’t Brad Pitt And Angelina Jolie Divorced Yet?

The main reason the two haven’t completely finalized their divorce has to do with custody of their six children, as well as hammering out the division of the couple’s financial assets, as well as child support. The two have been legally divorced since 2019, but their case is still continuing on. In fact, Jolie recently filed court papers seeking to replace the private judge who had been presiding over her and Pitt’s divorce case. Jolie’s lawyer, Samantha Bley DeJean, found out that Judge John W. Ouderkirk had a financial and professional relationship with Pitt’s attorneys, Anne C. Kiley and Lance Spiegel. The finish line is almost in sight for Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, but there is definitely a ways to go before the former couple’s years-long legal battle reaches its ultimate conclusion.


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