Sometime in 2005, Brad Pitt began giving a lot of thought to unhappy marriages. His fairy tale romance and marriage with Jennifer Aniston ended in a divorce. In the midst of the divorce rumors, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie had been romantically linked for several months.
Brad and Angelina were in Los Angeles filming Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Doug Liman’s thriller about a glamorous husband and wife who are secretly hired to assassinate each other. While the movie uses domestic ennui as a backdrop for a series of high-style action sequences, Pitt wanted to tell a darker, truer tale, one that explored the “unidentifiable malaise” that so often haunts a seemingly happy couple. “You don’t know what’s wrong,” he says, “because the marriage is everything you signed up for.”
That was the inspiration for this photo shoot, which Pitt created with photographer Steven Klein. Tired of celebrity portraiture and always up for an artistic “jam sesh,” as he calls it, Pitt essentially codirected the photo series, while starring in it alongside his Mr. and Mrs. Smith costar and purported new love, Angelina Jolie. He opted to set it in 1963 (the year he was born), a time when the last traces of the squeaky-clean Fifties were giving way to something more complicated. “The facade was still being maintained,” he says, “but things were starting to crumble underneath.”
Here world’s two hottest stars discuss love, marriage, and playing house in Palm Springs.