Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie met while filming the action thriller Mr. & Mrs. Smith, which came out back in 2005, but since then they've pursued separate projects -- until now. The two will star in By the Sea, based on a script that Jolie is writing and will direct. Universal Pictures will release the project, according to Deadline.
We first heard about this potential teaming in May, though this is the first we've heard that Jolie would also be directing. Rumor had it that the project might be a relationship drama about a married couple trying to save their marriage. Without providing any details, the official statement about the movie describes it as "an intimate, character-driven drama." Jolie is busy finishing postproduction work on historical epic Unbroken, which is due in theaters on December 25 and looks like an awards contender, so it's not clear when she will be able to give her full attention to By the Sea. She and Pitt will both share in producing the picture.
It's not unusual for couples who are romantically involved to star in movies together; recent examples include Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson in The Twilight Saga. And it's not even than unusual for one to direct the other: Ben Falcone directed Melissa McCarthy in Tammy and Judd Apatow directed Leslie Mann in a series of movies.
It is, however, far less usual for one to direct the other when both are appearing in the lead roles. (Falcone also appeared in Tammy, but in a supporting role.) We'd probably have to go back to the days when Woody Allen directed and starred opposite Diane Keaton in the 1970s (Annie Hall) and then Mia Farrow (Hannah and Her Sisters) in the 1980s. With the paucity of female directors, opportunities have been rare, but it's about time that more women have the opportunity to direct and star with their significant others if they choose to do so. The question for Pitt and Jolie is: can they spark again on the big screen like they do in real life?