Hollywood power couple Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have been granted permission to continue their divorce proceedings in private.
The acting duo married in 2014 after living together for nearly a decade. Fittingly, they first met on a film set – the now largely forgotten 2005 comedy Mr and Mrs Smith. But their relationship seems to have already been running out of steam by the time they tied the knot because in September 2016 news broke that Angelina had filed for divorce.
The celebrity press had a field day with the accusations and counter-accusations that followed but, perhaps realising that their brand was being tarnished, the pair then decided to retreat behind closed doors. In January last year, they issued a joint statement saying they had:
“The parties and their counsel have signed agreements to preserve the privacy rights of their children and family by keeping all court documents confidential and engaging a private judge to make any necessary legal decisions and to facilitate the expeditious resolution of any remaining issues.”
A year on the divorce remains unresolved but is still “full steam ahead” according to media reports. The estranged couple have now received permission to continue the proceedings in private, with the help of a “temporary judge”.
According to The Irish independent, the stars took a break from the proceedings last summer, leading to suggestions they planned to reconcile. But in reality they had only wanted time to properly sort out their complex financial arrangements.
The actors are said to have very different outcomes in mind for key assets and their six children – Maddox, Pax, Zahara, Shiloh, Knox and Vivienne. Brad is reported to want joint custody rather than just ‘visitation rights’ (contact in English legal parlance).
Meanwhile, the extent of their wealth has left their lawyers with plenty to discuss and negotiate over despite a prenuptial agreement, a ‘source’ told The Blast:
“First and foremost, it’s about money. They have so many properties and so many areas their pre-nup doesn’t cover.”
“For instance, Brad wants to keep their estate in France and keep up their wine brand, while Ange wants to sell the property and use it all for charity. Also, Brad has a collection of early 20th century furnishings that’s worth about $10 million, and Angelina wants that sold too.”
At 54, Brad is 12 years Angelina’s senior.