Angelina Jolie Biography: Angelina Jolie, born June 4, 1975, is an American actress, filmmaker, and humanitarian. She’s won an Academy Award and three Golden Globes, and has been Hollywood’s highest-paid actress multiple times.

Jolie began acting alongside her father in 1982 and gained prominence in the 1990s with films like “Hackers” and “Girl, Interrupted.” Her role in “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider” made her a household name. She’s starred in various successful films including “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” and “Maleficent,” and has directed several war dramas.

Aside from her career, Jolie is known for her humanitarian work, advocating for refugees and promoting causes like conservation and women’s rights. She’s received numerous honors for her efforts.

Jolie’s personal life, including her marriages to Jonny Lee Miller, Billy Bob Thornton, and Brad Pitt, as well as her six children with Pitt, has garnered significant media attention.

Angelina Jolie Biography - The Celeb Guru

Early life and education

Angelina Jolie Voight, born June 4, 1975, in Los Angeles, California, is the daughter of actors Jon Voight and Marcheline Bertrand. She’s also the sister of actor James Haven and has a background of German, Slovak, and claimed Indigenous ancestry. Raised mainly by her mother after her parents’ separation, Jolie was inspired to act by watching films.

Despite early struggles and a turbulent relationship with her father, she pursued acting, attending the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute. Jolie faced challenges in her teenage years, including self-harm, substance abuse, and mental health issues, but found stability after adopting her first child. Her relationship with her father has been strained, marked by periods of estrangement and reconciliation.


Early work (1991–1997)

At 16, Jolie decided to pursue acting professionally, although she struggled to land roles due to feedback about her demeanor being “too dark.” She appeared in her brother’s student films and various music videos. Jolie’s first leading role came in 1993 in the science-fiction film “Cyborg 2,” but she was disappointed with the project. Despite this setback, she continued with supporting roles in independent and major studio films like “Hackers” (1995), which marked her breakthrough. Her performance in “Foxfire” (1996) garnered praise, while subsequent films like “Playing God” (1997) and the CBS miniseries “True Women” (1997) received mixed reviews. Jolie also appeared in the music video for the Rolling Stones’s “Anybody Seen My Baby?”

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Rise to prominence (1998–2000)

Jolie’s career took off when she won a Golden Globe Award for her role in TNT’s “George Wallace” (1997) and received critical acclaim for portraying supermodel Gia Carangi in HBO’s “Gia” (1998), winning another Golden Globe and an Emmy nomination. Method acting deeply influenced her work, with Jolie immersing herself in characters even between scenes.

Despite briefly stepping away from acting after “Gia,” encouraged by her awards and positive reviews, she returned to the screen. She garnered praise for her performances in “Playing by Heart” (1998) and “Girl, Interrupted” (1999), winning a Golden Globe, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and an Academy Award for the latter. In 2000, she appeared in “Gone in 60 Seconds,” her first major summer blockbuster, which became her highest-grossing film at the time.

Worldwide recognition (2001–2004)

Although Jolie had earned acclaim for her acting, it wasn’t until 2001’s “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider” that she became a global superstar. Despite mixed reviews, her portrayal of the iconic adventurer catapulted her to fame as a female action star. Following this success, her subsequent films like “Original Sin” (2001) and “Life or Something Like It” (2002) received criticism despite her continued popularity.

Despite box office setbacks, she remained one of Hollywood’s highest-paid actresses, earning $10–15 million per film. Jolie reprised her role as Lara Croft in “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life” (2003) and starred in passion projects like “Beyond Borders” (2003), aiming to raise awareness of humanitarian issues. In 2004, she appeared in multiple films, including “Taking Lives,” “Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow,” “Shark Tale,” and “Alexander,” receiving mixed reviews but maintaining her status as a sought-after actress.

Established actress (2005–2017)

After directing the documentary “A Place in Time” (2007), distributed by the National Education Association, Jolie debuted as a feature film director with “In the Land of Blood and Honey” (2011), set during the Bosnian War. She aimed to raise awareness of survivors’ experiences, casting actors from the former Yugoslavia for authenticity. Despite mixed reviews, the film earned a Golden Globe nomination and Jolie was named an honorary citizen of Sarajevo.

Returning to acting after three years, Jolie starred in “Maleficent” (2014), receiving praise for her performance despite mixed critical reception. The film’s commercial success highlighted her appeal across demographics. Jolie then directed “Unbroken” (2014), based on the true story of WWII soldier Louis Zamperini. Although receiving mixed reviews, it performed well at the box office.

Her next directorial project, “By the Sea” (2015), co-starring Brad Pitt, faced criticism for its perceived lack of depth. However, Jolie’s commitment to humanitarian work remained steadfast, with “First They Killed My Father” (2017) allowing her to merge filmmaking and activism. The film, set in Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge era, received critical acclaim and award nominations.

Angelina Jolie's transformation through the years

Varying critical receptions (2019–present)

Jolie returned as Maleficent in “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” (2019), which had mixed reviews but did moderately well at the box office. In 2020, she appeared in “Come Away” alongside David Oyelowo and starred in “Those Who Wish Me Dead,” receiving praise for her performance despite the film’s reception. Jolie then joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Thena in “Eternals” (2021), which received mixed reviews.

Her upcoming projects include directing, writing, and producing an adaptation of Alessandro Baricco’s novel “Without Blood,” starring Salma Hayek and Demián Bichir. She’s also set to star in Pablo Larraín’s biographical film about opera singer Maria Callas, titled “Maria,” and produce and star in the thriller “The Kept,” based on the James Scott novel.

Personal life

Relationships and marriages

Jolie had a serious boyfriend at 14, living together with her mother’s approval. She compared the relationship to marriage in intensity, but their breakup led her to focus on acting at 16.

During “Hackers” (1995), she had a romance with Jonny Lee Miller, marrying him in 1996. Despite divorcing in 1999, they remained friends. Before Miller, she dated model Jenny Shimizu, expressing love for her and acknowledging her bisexuality.

In 2000, Jolie married Billy Bob Thornton after a short courtship. Their highly publicized marriage ended abruptly in 2003. She became embroiled in scandal amid allegations of causing Brad Pitt’s divorce from Jennifer Aniston in 2005. Jolie and Pitt, known as “Brangelina,” eventually married in 2014 but separated in 2016, with Jolie filing for divorce citing irreconcilable differences.

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Jolie has six children: three adopted internationally and three biological.

Her first adoption was Maddox Chivan, whom she adopted from Cambodia in March 2002, born on August 5, 2001. Despite legal challenges, she became his single parent following her separation from then-husband Billy Bob Thornton.

Next, she adopted Zahara Marley from Ethiopia in July 2005, born on January 8, 2005. Zahara’s birth mother later came forward, expressing gratitude for Jolie’s adoption.

Shiloh Nouvel, Jolie’s first biological child with Brad Pitt, was born in Namibia on May 27, 2006. They sold her first pictures to benefit charity.

In March 2007, she adopted Pax Thien from Vietnam, born on November 29, 2003, as a single parent. Pitt later adopted him.

Finally, Jolie gave birth to twins Knox Léon and Vivienne Marcheline in France on July 12, 2008. Their first pictures fetched a record sum, donated to charity.

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Cancer prevention treatment

At 37, Jolie underwent a preventive double mastectomy due to an 87% risk of breast cancer from a BRCA1 gene defect. Her family history included breast and ovarian cancer. After her mastectomy and subsequent oophorectomy two years later, she shared her story in The New York Times to raise awareness about genetic testing and preventive measures.

Her advocacy, known as “The Angelina Effect,” led to a significant increase in global BRCA gene testing. Jolie also advocated for wider accessibility to testing, which was aided by a 2013 U.S. Supreme Court ruling against gene patents.

Awards and nominations

Jolie’s accolades include three Golden Globe Awards. Two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her roles in George Wallace (1997), Gia (1998), and Girl, Interrupted (1999), respectively. She garnered nominations for her performances in A Mighty Heart (2007) and Changeling (2008). The latter earning her an Academy Award for Best Actress nomination.

Additionally, her action film roles in Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (2004), Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005), Wanted (2008), and The Tourist (2010) earned her several awards. Including an MTV Movie Award, two People’s Choice Awards, and four Teen Choice Awards. In 2013, she was honored with the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.

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