Angelina Jolie has opened up about her split from Brad Pitt in a September 2017 cover story in Vanity Fair. She also revealed in the interview that she had developed Bell’s Palsy which causes partial facial paralysis, a condition she has now recovered from.
The glamorous Hollywood power couple, referred to for over a decade as “Brangelina,” split last September when Jolie file for divorce and requested sole physical custody of their six children. Their contentious custody battled sparked a Hollywood tabloid frenzy with allegations that Pitt, after drinking on their private plane, had gotten “verbally abusive” and “physical” with their son Maddox. The Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services and the FBI launched an investigation, but found no signs of abuse and the couple released a joint statement that they were working together to resolve their divorce.
In the VF interview, Jolie said by the summer of 2016, “things became difficult” in their marriage, but she defended their life together. “[Our lifestyle] was not in any way a negative,” she told the magazine. “That was not the problem. 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.”
She also said the family is moving forward together: “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.”
Jolie added the she and Pitt are both dedicated to the best interests of their family: “We care for each other and care about our family, and we are both working towards the same goal.”
Pitt gave his first interview after their split to GQ Style in May, in which he said he had stopped drinking and was in therapy.“We’re both doing our best,” he told GQ. “I heard one lawyer say, ‘No one wins in court—it’s just a matter of who gets hurt worse.’ And it seems to be true, you spend a year just focused on building a case to prove your point and why you’re right and why they’re wrong, and it’s just an investment in vitriolic hatred. I just refuse. And fortunately my partner in this agrees. It’s just very, very jarring for the kids, to suddenly have their family ripped apart.”
Jolie also revealed to Vanity Fair that she had developed Bell’s Palsy, damage to the facial nerve which caused one side of her face to droop. She said acupuncture helped her fully recover from the facial paralysis. “Sometimes women in families put themselves last,” she said in the VF interview, “until it manifests itself in their own health.”