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Angelina Jolie reveals decline in health because of Brad Pitt divorce as she hints at Hollywood retirement

The Oscar-winner is ready for a new chapter, including her upcoming portrayal of Maria Callas, the launch of Atelier Jolie, and a potential move to Cambodia

Angelina Jolie
Beatriz Colon
Beatriz ColonOnline News WriterNew York
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Angelina Jolie has been through a lot. As the daughter of two actors, Jon Voight and Marcheline Bertrand, the Maleficent actress was exposed to the drawbacks of Hollywood even before her silver screen debut.

However what she saw as a rising star in her teens and 20s paled in comparison to the scrutiny and non-stop attention she experienced at the start of her headline-making romance with Brad Pitt back in 2005, not to mention what came with the seven-year long divorce proceedings with the fellow actor since their shocking split in 2018.

Now, just finally starting to put their countless custody disputes and legal challenges behind them, the doting mom-of-six is ready for her next chapter. That includes more time with her kids, Maddox, 21, Pax, 19, Zahara, 18, Shiloh, 17, and twins Vivienne and Knox, 15, focusing on her latest venture, Atelier Jolie, plus, yes, less acting.

WATCH: Angelina Jolie gushes about her six children

In a wide ranging new interview with WSJ. Magazine for their December/January digital cover, Angelina, 48, opened up about the necessary healing she and her family needed to do in the wake of their disbandment, and where that's left her today.

"We had to heal," she declared early in the conversation, adding: "There are things we needed to heal from," before recalling how a deterioration in her health foreshadowed her divorce from Brad.

The Oscar-winner – who is anticipating the premiere of her transformation into legendary opera singer Maria Callas in Pablo Larraín's upcoming biopic Maria – admitted she's "a little terrified to do it," the singing that is, after noticing a change to her voice register while filming Maleficent: Mistress of Evil in 2018 in the lead up to her split.

* do not use * Black and white photo of Angelina Jolie on the cover of WSJ. Magazine's December/January digital cover,  by Annemarieke Van Drimmelen for WSJ. Magazine.© Annemarieke Van Drimmelen for WSJ. Magazine
WSJ. Magazine's December/January 2024 Issue is available Saturday, December 9th

"My body reacts very strongly to stress," she said, before revealing: "My blood sugar goes up and down. I suddenly had Bell's palsy six months before my divorce."

MORE: Brad Pitt's comments on parenting his six children with Angelina Jolie revealed

MORE: Angelina Jolie's daughter Zahara makes surprising move to distance herself from father Brad Pitt

Now, while she still has several film projects in the works – a third Maleficent installment, a Broadway adaptation she first discovered thanks to her daughter Vivienne, and more movies – she's eager to step away from Hollywood.

* do not use * Black and white photo of Angelina Jolie on the cover of WSJ. Magazine's December/January digital cover,  by Annemarieke Van Drimmelen for WSJ. Magazine.© Annemarieke Van Drimmelen for WSJ. Magazine
The actress' new focus is Atelier Jolie

"I wouldn't be an actress today," Angelina declared, explaining: "When I was starting out, it wasn't as much of an expectation to be as public, to share so much."

MORE: Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's daughter inundated with support as she embarks on bold new chapter in personal life

* do not use * Black and white photo of Angelina Jolie on the cover of WSJ. Magazine's December/January digital cover,  by Annemarieke Van Drimmelen for WSJ. Magazine.© Annemarieke Van Drimmelen for WSJ. Magazine
Angelina candidly opened up about her next steps

As she further detailed her plans to hopefully leave both Hollywood as an industry and Los Angeles as a home base, she continued: "I grew up in quite a shallow place," maintaining that: "Of all the places in the world, Hollywood is not a healthy place."

MORE: Angelina Jolie's rarely-seen son Pax spotted working alongside star on film set in Paris

Maddox Jolie-Pitt, Vivienne Jolie-Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Zahara Jolie-Pitt, Shiloh Jolie-Pitt and Knox Jolie-Pitt attend the Los Angeles Premiere of Marvel Studios' "Eternals" on October 18, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.© Getty
Three of her six children have gone off to college

"So you seek authenticity," she went on, noting how "it's part of what happened after my divorce. I lost the ability to live and travel as freely."

"I will move when I can," she stated, and shared her hopes of spending more time in her home in Cambodia. She first fell in love with the country while filming Lara croft: Tomb Raider in 2000, and subsequently adopted her eldest son Maddox from the country in 2002, followed by his younger brother Pax from neighboring Vietnam in 2007.

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