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Angelina Jolie's fresh heartbreak over legal battle with ex-husband Brad Pitt

The Mr and Mrs Smith stars split in 2019

Faye James
Senior Editor
May 23, 2024
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Angelina Jolie is facing fresh heartbreak in yet another legal setback in her ongoing battle with Brad Pitt over their luxurious Chateau Miraval estate.

The 48-year-old actress has been ordered by an LA Superior Court judge to produce every Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) she signed with third parties from 2014—the year she married Brad—through to 2022.

The judge's decision, detailed in recently released documents, marks a significant turn in what has been described as a 'War of the Roses' between the Hollywood A-listers. 

Their dispute centers on Angelina's rights to sell her stake in their French vineyard and home, which she sold for $62 million to Russian billionaire Yuri Shefler in 2021. 

Brad argues this sale violated their agreement, which stipulated that they must offer their share to each other first before selling to outsiders.

Brad & Angelina's Bitter Ongoing Legal Battle

NDAs have emerged as a critical point of contention. Angelina claims she withdrew from their agreement because Brad, 60, demanded she sign an NDA as part of their business dealings. 

She describes this request as an 'unconscionable' attempt to control her following their April 2019 split. Brad's legal team, however, contends that Angelina's objection to the NDA is merely a cover for her decision to sell her stake behind Brad's back.

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie attend the Inglourious Basterds Premiere held at the Palais Des Festivals during the 62nd International Cannes Film Festival in 2009 © Getty
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in happier days in 2009

Brad’s attorneys also argue that Angelina herself frequently used NDAs and had even asked Brad to sign a broader NDA six months after their split during their divorce settlement discussions. They previously requested that Angelina disclose any NDAs she entered into with third parties, including staff.

Judge Lia Martin dismissed Angelina's objections, ruling that her NDAs are indeed relevant to the case. 

Angelina on street in a black slip dress© Getty
Angelina is embroiled in a legal battle with her ex

The court ordered Angelina to produce all NDAs she proposed or were proposed to her, regardless of whether they were finalized. This also includes NDAs entered into by companies she controls and documents reflecting the reasons behind these agreements, which must be provided within 60 days.

Paul Murphy, one of Angelina's attorneys asserted that the judge's order allows Angelina to demand documents related to Brad's alleged misconduct. “Common NDAs are simply not comparable to Brad’s last-second demand to try and cover up his personal misconduct,” Paul stated to Daily Mail. 

Angelina and Brad with their six children, Maddox, Pax, Zahara, Shiloh, Vivienne and Knox© Getty
Angelina and Brad with their six children, Maddox, Pax, Zahara, Shiloh, Vivienne and Knox

“We are more than happy to turn them over and we are gratified that the Court acknowledged that the only potential relevance is to the unconscionability of Brad’s conduct, a now confirmed key issue in this case.”

He added, “The judge’s ruling completely opens the door to discovery on all issues related to Brad’s abuse. We welcome that transparency in all parties’ discovery responses, including Brad’s.”

This latest development comes shortly after Angelina was accused of attempting to create a rift between Brad and their six children following their split. In a declaration, former bodyguard Tony Webb claimed that Angelina urged her children to avoid Brad when they were in her custody. 

Tony, who worked for the family for over 20 years, alleges that Angelina fired him after two of his security personnel supported Brad in the custody battle.Tony's declaration, submitted by Brad’s lawyers, included statements that Angelina's personal assistant threatened to sue security personnel who might testify in the custody case. 

An aerial view taken in Le Val, southeastern France shows the Chateau Miraval, a vineyard estate previously owned by Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie © MICHEL GANGNE
An aerial view taken in Le Val, southeastern France shows the Chateau Miraval, a vineyard estate previously owned by Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie

The documents also claim that Angelina encouraged the children to avoid spending time with Brad during custody visits. Brad's team has used these claims to argue that Angelina has a history of using NDAs to control narratives and silence individuals.

Brad’s attorneys labeled Angelina a "hypocrite" for claiming his NDA request was an attempt to control her while she allegedly used NDAs to silence her staff. John Berlinski, one of Brad’s attorneys, argued that Angelina's use of NDAs is relevant to the case, as it reflects her routine practice in personal and professional matters. He added that Angelina’s timeline regarding the NDA proposal did not align with her actions, noting that she began negotiations with Shefler before Brad suggested a confidentiality agreement.

Despite the ongoing legal battles, Brad has scored several victories, including a recent judgment in Luxembourg that temporarily restored his control over the award-winning vineyard pending further hearings. 

In March, the LA Superior Court rejected Angelina’s allegations that Brad's lawsuit was "frivolous, malicious, and part of a problematic pattern."

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