It’s the story the world wants to read – that former golden couple Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt are reunited.
This year will mark the 15th anniversary of a split that sent shock waves through Hollywood and left fans asking: if Jennifer Aniston, now 50, and Brad, 56, couldn’t make it work, then who could?
Since then, they’ve both remarried and divorced – and, at the recent Golden Globe Awards, Brad spoke on the record about his former wife for the first time in almost a decade.
When a journalist bluntly – but correctly – told Brad fans were desperate for him and Jen to be snapped together on the red carpet, he replied, “I’ll run into Jen. She’s a good friend.”
Then, referring to Jen reuniting with her former Friends co-stars on Instagram last October, he joked it would be the, “second most important reunion of her year”.
So, what’s really going on between Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt?
Days before appearing at the Golden Globes, Jen was spotted on holiday with her rumoured new boyfriend, film director Will Speck. Meanwhile, Brad was most recently linked to Charlize Theron, although she later denied they were involved romantically.
Brad made a joke about this as he accepted his gong for Best Supporting Actor in Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, telling the audience, “I wanted to bring my mum, but I couldn’t because any woman I stand next to, they say I’m dating. It would just be awkward.”
The camera then panned to Jen, who was seen laughing at her ex-husband’s joke, no doubt able to relate to his words. But, away from any dating rumours, our insider reveals Brad is someone Jen trusts completely, and he’s made it clear he’ll always be there for her.
Our source adds, “It’s true they’ve grown close again, but romance just isn’t on the cards. Jen and Brad know they can go to each other for advice on prospective partners, and they’re so glad they’ve managed to get to this place.”
It seems that, for now at least, these two really are just good friends…
What about their secret meetings?
Soon after Jen’s split from husband Justin Theroux and Brad’s messy divorce from Angelina Jolie, the pair started meeting in secret.
A source at the time said, “From their first meeting, it was clear that their friendship is still as strong as ever. They decided to meet up, and now they’ve had several encounters. They’re just friends, but everyone would love to see them get back together!”
After reconnecting, Brad was spotted sneaking into Jen’s 50th birthday party in Los Angeles last February – suggesting they’re closer now than they’ve been in years.
Just party pals?
They weren’t photographed together at the awards, but Brad and The Morning Show star Jen were seen leaving, albeit separately, the same after-party at the Sunset Tower Hotel in West Hollywood, and our sources inside say they spent some of the evening together.
“Jen and Brad shared plenty of banter,” our insider says. ‘They exchanged views on the night’s winners and losers and spoke about show host Ricky Gervais’ jokes. A few of their team members stood in front of the area to make sure they got plenty of privacy.
“It was always Brad’s and Jen’s intention to hang out at the party. They’ve made a point of downplaying how often they spend time together, but that’s purely to keep people from prying or getting too excited. Brad left the party first and Jen stayed on for a while with her friends.”
We’re told Brad and Jen know there’s still a huge level of interest in them as a couple, which is why they won’t spend time together in public.
Our source adds, “There’s a real respect shown towards them by their peers – who definitely see Brad and Jen as Hollywood royalty – and a widespread acknowledgement of how cool it is that they’re close again. But what they both wanted to avoid at all costs was a media circus, and they’re pleased to have pulled that off.”