Grazia (UK) - - 10 Hot Stories -

BRAD PITT AND An­gelina Jolie’s di­vorce – dubbed the most ac­ri­mo­nious in Hol­ly­wood his­tory – has en­dured two years of ne­go­ti­a­tions, toxic spats and ar­gu­ments over child cus­tody. Now, ac­cord­ing to an La-based source, their split has reached a ‘crit­i­cal stage’ with the ap­pear­ance of a new char­ac­ter as the case draws to a close.

Dr Stan Katz – a par­ent­ing eval­u­a­tor who has acted as a psy­chol­o­gist in many high pro­file Hol­ly­wood law­suits, in­clud­ing Michael Jack­son’s trial for mo­lesta­tion – was ap­pointed by the court ear­lier this month. He’s there to help as­sess both Brad and An­gelina as they fight for the cus­tody of their six chil­dren. An eval­u­a­tion is now un­der­way and will lead to Dr Katz de­ter­min­ing a per­ma­nent cus­tody deal. (An­gelina is still said to be gun­ning for full cus­tody, while Brad wants joint cus­tody.)

‘Brad and An­gelina may have gone quiet while they thrash this out, but be­hind the scenes they are still fight­ing to prove their ca­pa­bil­i­ties as lov­ing par­ents,’ said a source. ‘An­gelina is on a mis­sion to

present her­self as “mother of the year.”’

In­deed, per­haps tellingly, the 43-yearold has, in re­cent weeks, rou­tinely been pic­tured tak­ing her chil­dren to din­ner, to their mar­tial arts classes or to Whole Foods in LA. It fol­lows the most dra­matic mo­ment in the ne­go­ti­a­tions yet, when a judge re­port­edly warned her ear­lier this sum­mer that she could lose cus­tody of the chil­dren al­to­gether if she did not help re­pair their re­la­tion­ship with Brad. Brad was sub­se­quently given more visi­ta­tion rights, while her par­ent­ing was ef­fec­tively placed ‘on trial’ over the sum­mer.

Ac­cord­ing to in­sid­ers, both par­ties are now gather­ing ‘col­lat­eral sources’ to pro­vide char­ac­ter ref­er­ences. An­gelina is said to have called on ‘a nanny and sev­eral mem­bers of her se­cu­rity team’ to pro­vide ev­i­dence, but is ap­par­ently anx­ious that Brad will in­clude tes­ti­monies from his close cir­cle of Hol­ly­wood friends, who have fa­mously sided with him dur­ing the dif­fi­cult di­vorce talks.

‘Ange is con­cerned that Brad has a big­ger list of sources at hand to use in the eval­u­a­tion process,’ said an in­sider. ‘He’s also or­gan­is­ing for the kids to see their grand­par­ents on his side, with his par­ents Doug and Julie vis­it­ing them in Cal­i­for­nia.’

But with the di­vorce threat­en­ing to drag on longer than Brexit ne­go­ti­a­tions, when will this be over? ‘Re­al­is­ti­cally, the court isn’t go­ing to let this case con­tinue for longer than 60-90 days, no mat­ter what An­gelina and her le­gal team pull out of the bag,’ said a well-placed source. ‘ Those close to both of them can­not wait for this to fi­nally be over, and for the two of them to ac­cept the re­sult and move on with their lives.’

An­gelina with the chil­dren ear­lier this year. Far right: Brad in NYC last week

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