In news that stunned the pop culture aficionados on Tuesday, court documents revealed that one of the most high profile celebrity marriages is coming to an end. Angelina Jolie has filed for divorce from Brad Pitt after just a little more than two years of marriage. Jolie cited “irreconcilable differences” in the divorce paperwork and is seeking custody of their six children.
Jolie has emerged in recent years as one of Hollywood’s foremost humanitarians and a friend of Women in the World. She’s appeared on our stage numerous times over the years, most recently putting the finishing touches on the 2015 Women in the World New York Summit with an impassioned appeal to leaders the world over on behalf of women and girls. At the 2013 WITW New York Summit, Jolie paid tribute to Malala Yousafzai and made a $200,000 donation to her charity. She’s also been a courageous example for women everywhere by openly discussing preemptive measures she’s taken to prevent ovarian cancer. “My children will never have to say: mom died of ovarian cancer,” Jolie wrote in a moving 2015 New York Times Op-Ed. In that piece she also revealed that she’d undergone a preemptive double-mastectomy and had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed.
Jolie and Pitt reportedly separated on September 15 and rumors as to what caused the rift have swirled online, but we’ll leave those to be addressed by other sites. Some have speculated that a bitter custody battle is in the offing, but statements from both sides indicated that Jolie and Pitt want what’s best for their kids. “Angelina will always do what’s in the best interest to protect her children,” Jolie’s manager, Geyer Kosinski, told E! News. “She appreciates everyone’s understanding of their need for privacy at this time.” In a statement to CNN, Brad Pitt said, “I am very saddened by this, but what matters most now is the wellbeing of our kids. I kindly ask the press to give them the space they deserve during this challenging time.”