That noise you just heard was the heads of celebrity tabloid editors’ heads exploding in unison at the news that Brad Pitt finally put a ring on it and proposed to Angelina Jolie .
Rumors of an engagement began to swirl when Jolie was spotted at a private viewing at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s Chinese galleries on Wednesday rocking quite a sparkler on her ring finger. Pitt’s manager Cynthia Pett-Dante confirmed the engagement to People, saying, “It is a promise for the future and their kids are very happy.”
The pair have been together for seven years and have six children. Their love story has been documented like crazy by the tabloids, but in honor of their long-overdue engagement, we decided to take a look back at the highlights of their relationship to show you how they got from meeting on a movie set to preparing to walk down the aisle.
» Summer 2004: Pitt and Jolie meet on the set of “Mr. & Mrs. Smith.” Rumors of an on-set romance begin almost immediately, though both deny the allegations, saying they are just friends.
» January 2005: Pitt and then-wife Jennifer Aniston announce that they have decided to formally separate after nearly five years of marriage and more than seven years together.
» March 2005: Aniston files for divorce, citing “irreconcilable differences.”
» April 2005: Paparazzi photos of Pitt, Jolie and her adopted son Maddox on a beach in Kenya surface, seeming to confirm long-standing rumors that the pair are a romantic item.
» July 2005: Pitt and Jolie pose for a photo shoot for W magazine entitled “Domestic Bliss,” portraying them as a family with several children. Though rumors that they were a serious item had reached a fever pitch, they continued to refuse to confirm anything. Following the paparazzi images of the couple together in Kenya, many considered the shoot a major affront to Aniston, as her divorce from Pitt had not yet been finalized.
» July 6, 2005: Jolie adopts her second child, 6-month-old daughter Zahara Marley, from an orphanage in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
» October 2, 2005: Pitt and Aniston’s divorce is finalized by the Los Angeles Superior Court.
» January 11, 2006: Jolie confirms to People that she is pregnant with her first child with Pitt.
» January 19, 2006: A judge grants Jolie’s request to legally change the last names of her adopted children from Jolie to Jolie-Pitt. Pitt’s legal adoption of both Maddox and Zahara was granted soon after.
» May 27, 2006: Jolie gives birth to the couple’s first biological child, daughter Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt, in Swakopmund, Namibia. Shiloh’s first pictures were sold exclusively to People and OK for $4.1 million and $3.5 million, respectively, and all of the cash was donated to charities benefiting African children.
» October 2006: Voicing his support for same-sex couples seeking equal marriage rights, Pitt tells Esquire magazine that he and Jolie would marry “when everyone else in the country who wants to be married is legally able.”
» March 15, 2007: Jolie adopts 3-year-old Pax Thien from an orphanage in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Because Vietnam’s adoption regulations do not allow unmarried couples to co-adopt, Jolie adopted Pax as a single parent, but filed a request to legally change her son’s surname from Jolie to Jolie-Pitt a month later.
» May 2008: After much speculation, while promoting “Kung Fu Panda” at the Cannes Film Festival, Jolie confirms that she and Pitt are expecting twins.
» July 12, 2008: Jolie gives birth to a son, Knox Léon, and a daughter, Vivienne Marcheline, in Nice, France. As they did following Shiloh’s birth, Pitt and Jolie sold the rights for the first images of the twins jointly to People and Hello! for $14 million (the most expensive celebrity pictures ever taken) with proceeds going to their Jolie-Pitt Foundation.
» October 15, 2008: Jolie ignites controversy after telling The New York Times that she is excited for her children to see “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” because “not a lot of people get to see a movie where their parents fell in love.” Both Pitt and Jolie had long maintained that while there was chemistry on the set of “Smith,” Pitt did not cheat on Aniston during production and began his relationship with Jolie after they’d separated.
» November 2008: In an interview with Vogue, Jennifer Aniston says that Jolie’s comment to the NYT that she and Pitt fell in love on the set of “Smith” was “uncool.” “I felt those details were a little inappropriate to discuss,” Aniston said. “That stuff about how she couldn’t wait to get to work every day? That was really uncool.”
» July 5, 2011: Praising New York on passing marriage equality legislation, Pitt reaffirmed to People that he and Jolie will not marry until all Americans are afforded marriage rights.
» September 2011: Pitt finds himself embroiled in controversy after telling Parade, “I wasn’t living an interesting life myself. I think that my marriage had something to do with it. Trying to pretend the marriage was something that it wasn’t.” This was, as usual, scooped up by the tabloids as if he were hurling an insult at Aniston, and much of his “Moneyball” press tour was spent explaining that he was simply at a bad place in his life near the end of his marriage and that his relationship with Jolie reinvigorated him.
» December 2011: Promoting her directorial debut “In the Land of Blood and Honey,” Jolie tells Christiane Amanpour that her kids were pressing her to get married. “The kids asked me the other day, and I asked them if it was just because they wanted to have a ’big cake,’ ” Jolie said. “They see movies that have the people getting married in the movies … you know, the happily ever after. Shrek and Fiona are married. … We’ve explained to them that our commitment when we decided to start a family was the greatest commitment you could possibly have. Once you have six children, you’re committed.”
» January 2012: Pitt co-signed Jolie’s statement that their children were pushing them down the aisle. “We’d actually like to,” he told The Hollywood Reporter of marrying Jolie, “and it seems to mean more and more to our kids. We made this declaration some time ago that we weren’t going to do it till everyone can. But I don’t think we’ll be able to hold out. It means so much to my kids, and they ask a lot. And it means something to me, too, to make that kind of commitment.”
Those spoiled Jolie-Pitts, always getting what they want!