From Mr. and Mrs. Smith to 'Nuclear Eruption': Tracking Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's Relationship

Images via Getty.

On Tuesday, news broke that Angelina Jolie had filed for divorce from her partner of 11 (or 12, depending on who you ask) years, actor Brad Pitt. Since getting together in the mid aughts, “Brangelina” has not been strangers to tabloid speculation (though rumors of their divorce truly ramped up towards the end of 2015). Pour yourself a big glass (might as well make it a bowl) of Chateau Miraval rosé, because you’re about to read a timeline of the gossip that has followed them since 2004—and you’re gonna need all the help you can get.


Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie meet on the set of romantic caper Mr. and Mrs. Smith. Though Pitt was still married to Jennifer Aniston at the time, director Doug Liman tells Huffington Post that Pitt and Jolie “were amazing together right from the beginning, from that opening scene in couples’ counseling on the first day with no rehearsal. And that’s the stuff you can’t fake. They were just magnetic on screen together.”


January 24, 2005

In a statement given to People, Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt announce their separation, saying, “We would like to announce that after seven years together we have decided to formally separate.”

They deny rumors that Jolie has come between them, adding, “For those who follow these sorts of things, we would like to explain that our separation is not the result of any of the speculation reported by the tabloid media. This decision is the result of much thoughtful consideration. We happily remain committed and caring friends with great love and admiration for one another. We ask in advance for your kindness and sensitivity in the coming months.”

April 2005

While denying a personal romantic relationship, Pitt and Jolie are photographed by paparazzi while vacationing together in Kenya. Pitt continues to deny any infidelity to Jennifer Aniston.

Image via Star.

June 2005

On Today, Jolie tells Ann Curry that she and Pitt were not physically involved while he was still with Aniston, stating:

“To be intimate with a married man, when my own father cheated on my mother, is not something I could forgive. I could not look at myself in the morning if I did that. I wouldn’t be attracted to a man who would cheat on his wife.”


July 1, 2005

Promoting Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Pitt and Jolie appear as husband and wife in a spread in W.

Image via W Magazine/Steven Klein.

September 2005

Jennifer Aniston is interviewed by Vanity Fair’s Leslie Bennetts. In the profile, titled The “Unsinkable Jennifer Aniston,” Aniston (crying the whole time) speaks on her marriage to Pitt, telling Bennetts, “We’re divorced, and you can see why,” referring to the aforementioned W spread.


She adds, “Brad is not mean-spirited; he would never intentionally try to rub something in my face. In hindsight, I can see him going, ‘Oh—I can see that that was inconsiderate.’ But I know Brad. Brad would say, ‘That’s art!’...There’s a sensitivity chip that’s missing.”


Pitt and Jolie announce that Jolie is expecting a child. Their daughter Shiloh is born in June. As would become precedent, they donate proceeds from the sale of the first photos of her to charity.


March 2007

Pitt and Jolie adopt son Pax. Pitt was also present at the adoption of their daughter, Zahara, but did not sign the papers until later—when he also adopted Jolie’s son Maddox.


May 2008

Pitt and Jolie have twins Knox and Vivienne. The couple now have six children together.

Image via People.

August 2008

Rumors circulate (and would continue to in the coming years) that the Jolie-Pitt home is an unregulated mess.


October 15, 2008

Jolie addressed what was—at the very least—an emotional affair that occurred on the set of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, telling the New York Times that she’s excited to show the film to Maddox, couple’s eldest son, because “not a lot of people get to see a movie where their parents fell in love.” Photos Pitt has taken of her and their children accompany a profile of her in W.


December 2008

Pitt admits to Rolling Stone that he fell in love with Jolie while still married to Jennifer Aniston. Asked what his favorite Jolie film is, Pitt replied Mr. and Mrs. Smith, even though the couple had yet to ever watch it.


“We’ve never seen it,” remarked Pitt. “I just mean because, you know...six kids. Because I fell in love.”

January 2009

Pitt tells W:

“What people don’t understand is that we filmed [Mr. & Mrs. Smith] for a year. We were still filming after Jen and I split up. Even then it doesn’t mean that there was some kind of dastardly affair. There wasn’t. I’m very proud of the way that it was handled. It was respectful. [The film] will mean something to our kids. It will, that’s all.”


December 2010

Despite not knowing the couple, noted busybody Dr. Drew Pinsky predicts that Jolie and Pitt’s relationship will explode in a “nuclear eruption.” He apologizes a day after making the statement, telling Radar, “These comments were taken completely out of context (and) they were never meant to be printed.”


Whatever you say, bruh.

April 2012

After a few years of back-and-forth about whether they would ever marry, Pitt and Jolie announce they are engaged.


June 2013

Jolie announces that she has had a preventative mastectomy after learning she carries the BRCA1 gene. Two years later she announces she has removed her ovaries as well.


August 2014

After a two-year engagement, Pitt and Jolie are married at Chateau Miraval, their castle in France. Jolie wears a wedding dress cutely patterned with art made by the couple’s children.


Both People and Hello! publish “exclusive” photos from the wedding.

Images via People/Hello!

October-November 2015

While promoting By the Sea (a film written and directed by Jolie and starring her and Pitt), Jolie tells the Telegraph that she and Pitt “have our issues...To be clear: we have fights and problems like any other couple. We have days when we drive each other absolutely mad and want space...”


In an interview with Today, Jolie says, “I’m counting on the audience to know that if it was close to us at all, we could never make this film. It’s because we’re actually very, very stable and these aren’t our issues.”

By the Sea is released. Jezebel’s Rich Juzwiak (then of Gawker) writes:

The lives of [characters] Vanessa and Roland have nothing to do with Jolie and Pitt (even after Jolie had her ovaries removed), because theirs are so much better. We know this going in because they are celebrities, and By the Sea provides nothing but a redundant, miserable reminder.


In the film, the couple exhibits little chemistry.

January 2016

Hollywood Life reports that Pitt and Jolie have been “living separate lives for over a year” and that the couple had “a series of relationship-ending fights” over the holidays.


May 2016

Tabloid OK! reports that Pitt and Jolie “are now seriously considering a permanent split” after a rumored decline in Jolie’s health and an alleged affair between Pitt and his Allied co-star, famed 9/11 truther Marion Cotillard. Other tabloids report similar rumors, though rumor debunking website Gossip Cop denies it.

Image via OK!

That same month, Radar Online claims that the couple’s divorce is imminent after Brad Pitt is caught “kissing” (paparazzi photos capture an innocuous on-set peck on the cheek) with his other Allied co-star Lizzy Caplan.


If rumors are to be believed, Brad Pitt is fucking pretty much everyone on the Allied set and Angelina Jolie is nowhere in sight.

June 23, 2016

US Weekly reports that Pitt and Jolie are arguing over whether or not to keep Chateau Miraval—with Jolie hoping to sell it and Pitt wanting to keep it. Classic castle problems. They note that Jolie seems increasingly interested in political life and wants less to do with Hollywood than Pitt.


June 29, 2016

Brad Pitt spends Father’s Day alone. According to a source in Star, “Angie is ready to divorce Brad. She’s fed up with what her life has become and wants to make a change,”


July 4, 2016

Pitt and Jolie make an increasingly rare public appearance together.

July 6, 2016

In Touch reports that Jolie went “nuclear” (Dr. Drew was right!) after learning that Pitt reached out to ex wife Jennifer Aniston following her mother’s death.

Image via In Touch.

“It was their first moment in months without the kids or staff around,” a source tells In Touch. “Angie thought a good one-on-one conversation would enable them to finally catch up on their lives. Then, Brad casually mentioned that he’d reached out to Jen to send his sympathy after her mom passed away in May. He didn’t think it was a big deal.”


July 10, 2016

Amidst mounting tabloid coverage suggesting their relationship is in trouble, Pitt and Jolie “put divorce rumors to rest” while exhibiting public displays of affection at an L.A. Jamba Juice.


August 22, 2016

A source tells People that Pitt and Jolie “are as happy as ever.”

The following day (August 23), Hollywood Life states that the couple spent their second anniversary confirming that they “still only have eyes for each other.”


Says one source, “Despite their busy schedules, Brad and Angie have recommitted themselves to each other and are actually more in love than ever. Family time is a huge priority for them, so they make sure to spend quality time with one another alone, and with the kids.”

August 25, 2016

Gossip site Celebrity Dirty Laundry claims that Pitt is leaving Jolie for Cotillard. Gossip Cop denies it.


September 14, 2016

In Touch reports that following bitter fights and “separate lives,” Pitt and Jolie are involved in a $400 million divorce battle (an amount consistently referenced because it’s their cumulative net worth).


Gossip Cop responds to the In Touch article, writing that “Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are NOT getting a ‘$400 million divorce,’ despite a completely made-up tabloid cover story.”


Prepare to eat crow, Gossip Cop.

September 19, 2016

Hall of Fame Magazine, which I have never heard of before now, reports that Pitt and Jolie are divorcing not because of Cotillard, not because of Aniston, but because of Pitt’s ex flame Gwyneth Paltrow:

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt got into a huge fight when she heard him say Gwyneth Paltrow’s name while he was sleeping.


Though likely untrue, this is a very good rumor—one also suggested by questionable site Morning News USA. That said, both websites reported on the divorce the day Jolie officially filed. Is this a case of even broken tabloids being right twice a day or do these shoddy websites have the real dirt?

Inquisitr also reports on the divorce that day, but—according to the site—the third party involved is more likely Cotillard than Paltrow.


September 20, 2016

Using celebrity divorce attorney Laura Wasser, news breaks that Jolie—for real this time—has filed for divorce from Brad Pitt. TMZ claims the divorce came following a parenting dispute, though Page Six has published a more scandalous report that alleges Jolie caught Pitt having an affair with Cotillard by hiring a private eye. Meanwhile, gossip queen Elaine Lui (the only gossip writer I consistently trust) writes that Cotillard and her partner Guillaume Canet are still together.


Brad Pitt gave the following quote to People the following day:

“I am very saddened by this, but what matters most now is the well-being of our kids,” he said in the statement. “I kindly ask the press to give them the space they deserve during this challenging time.”


And so the cycle begins again...

Share This Story

Get our newsletter

About the author