Publish date:
Updated on

Angelina Jolie born

On this day in 1975, the Academy Award-winning actress Angelina Jolie (Voight) is born in Los Angeles, California.

Jolie’s father, the actor Jon Voight, had been nominated for a Best Actor Oscar for Midnight Cowboy (1969); he won the award for Coming Home (1978). Her mother, Marcheline Bertrand, was also an actress; the couple divorced when Angelina was still an infant. As a young girl, Jolie worked as a model and appeared with her father in the 1982 film Lookin’ to Get Out. She later studied acting at the famed Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute and New York University. After appearing in a small role in Cyborg 2 (1993), Jolie landed a sizeable part in the better-known Hackers (1995), which co-starred the British actor Jonny Lee Miller. Jolie and Miller married that year but split in 1997 and later divorced.

After a string of forgettable films, Jolie was nominated for an Emmy and won a Golden Globe for her role as the wife of the segregationist Alabama governor, in the television movie George Wallace. She earned another Emmy nod the following year for her portrayal of the troubled bisexual model Gia Carangi in the TV biopic Gia. Suddenly very much in demand, Jolie landed roles in higher-profile big-screen projects such as Playing By Heart (1998), Pushing Tin (1999) and The Bone Collector (1999).

It was Jolie’s mesmerizing turn as the charismatic sociopath Lisa in Girl, Interrupted, however, that catapulted her to A-list Hollywood stardom. She won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the role, and characteristically raised eyebrows by locking lips with her older brother, James Haven, at the 2000 Oscar ceremony. That May, Jolie again generated a flurry of headlines when she wed Billy Bob Thornton, her much older, four-times-married co-star in Pushing Tin (1999), in a quickie ceremony in Las Vegas. Later in 2000, Jolie starred in the fast-paced hit Gone in Sixty Seconds and the thriller Original Sin. During a brief reconciliation with her father, the two appeared together in Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001), a blockbuster action film in which Jolie performed the majority of her own stunts. Despite poor reviews, Tomb Raider and its 2003 sequel were both huge box-office hits. Less successful was the romantic comedy-drama Life or Something Like It (2002).

The press painted a vivid picture of Jolie and Thornton’s eccentric devotion to each other, including the fact that they wore vials of each other’s blood around their necks. Still, Jolie filed for divorce in mid-2002. By that time, she had been appointed a goodwill ambassador by the United Nations, having first made goodwill trips while researching her role as an aid worker in 2003’ Beyond Borders. She also adopted a son, Maddox, from Cambodia.

In April 2004, Jolie began filming Mr. & Mrs. Smith, in which she and Brad Pitt played a married couple who are secretly both hired assassins. Rumors soon began flying about their off-screen romantic involvement, and only intensified after Pitt and his wife Jennifer Aniston announced their separation in January 2005. Two months after his divorce from Aniston was finalized, Pitt petitioned to adopt Maddox and Jolie’s daughter Zahara (adopted in June 2005 in Ethiopia). In January 2006, during a visit to the Dominican Republic, the now-official couple–dubbed “Brangelina” by the press–announced that Jolie was pregnant. Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt was born that May in Namibia. Jolie adopted another son, Pax Thien, from an orphanage in Vietnam in March 2007; she gave birth to twins, Knox Leon and Vivienne Marcheline, in France in July 2008.

Though her film career often seemed to take a backseat in the headlines to her globetrotting lifestyle and ever-expanding family (not to mention her romance with the equally photogenic Pitt), Jolie continued to work steadily in films, notably in the spy drama The Good Shepherd (2006) and A Mighty Heart (2007), in which she played Mariane Pearl, the wife of a Wall Street Journal reporter who was killed by terrorists in Pakistan in 2002. In 2008, she starred in the summer action film Wanted and the crime drama Changeling, directed by Clint Eastwood.


FACT CHECK: We strive for accuracy and fairness. But if you see something that doesn't look right, click here to contact us!


Operation Dynamo at Dunkirk ends

As the German army advances through northern France during the early days of World War II, it cuts off British troops from their French allies, forcing an enormous evacuation of soldiers across the North Sea from the town of Dunkirk to England. The Allied armies, trapped by the more

Congress passes the 19th Amendment

The 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, guaranteeing women the right to vote, is passed by Congress and sent to the states for ratification. The women’s suffrage movement was founded in the mid-19th century by women who had become politically active through their work in the more

Angela Davis acquitted

Angela Yvonne Davis, a black militant, former philosophy professor at the University of California, and self-proclaimed communist, is acquitted on charges of conspiracy, murder, and kidnapping by an all-white jury in San Jose, California. In October 1970, Davis was arrested in more

Battle of Midway begins

On this day in 1942, the Battle of Midway–one of the most decisive U.S. victories against Japan during World War II–begins. During the four-day sea-and-air battle, the outnumbered U.S. Pacific Fleet succeeded in destroying four Japanese aircraft carriers while losing only one of more

The Battle of Midway begins

On this day in 1942, Japanese Admiral Chuichi Nagumo, commander of the fleet that attacked Pearl Harbor, launches a raid on Midway Island with almost the entirety of the Japanese navy. As part of a strategy to widen its sphere of influence and conquest, the Japanese set their more

Walt takes command of 3rd Marine Division

Maj. Gen. Lewis Walt takes command of the 3rd Marine Division from Maj. Gen. William Collins. Walt was concurrently named Commander of the III Amphibious Force (III MAF), the first corps-level Marine Corps headquarters in history. As such, Walt was in command of two Marine more

FDR asks for drought-relief funds

On this day in 1934, President Franklin Roosevelt asks Congress to appropriate $52.5 million to battle economic and social disaster in the American Midwest caused in part by a series of droughts in the Great Plains region. A series of great droughts that began in the 1920s and a more

Trains collide in Bangladesh

The collision of two trains in Jessore, Bangladesh, kills 76 people on this day in 1972. This disaster resulted from one simple error by a train-station operator. An express train loaded far beyond capacity, as is common in Bangladesh, left the southern port city of Khulna more

Confederates evacuate Fort Pillow

Confederate forces slip out of Fort Pillow, Tennessee, a key stronghold on the Mississippi River, clearing the way for the Union capture of Memphis. Fort Pillow lay south of Island No. 10, the Confederates’ key defense from a Northern assault. Although considered a backup to more

Tiananmen Square massacre takes place

Chinese troops storm through Tiananmen Square in the center of Beijing, killing and arresting thousands of pro-democracy protesters. The brutal Chinese government assault on the protesters shocked the West and brought denunciations and sanctions from the United States. In May more