Following his high-profile 2016 divorce from Angelina Jolie, his partner of 11 years, Pitt committed to sobriety, he said in the profile.
“I had taken things as far as I could take it, so I removed my drinking privileges,” he told the Times.
Pitt started attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, where he said he forged a close relationship with the recovery group of men with whom he shared the most confidential parts of his life.
“You had all these men sitting around being open and honest in a way I have never heard,” he shared. “It was this safe space where there was little judgment, and therefore little judgment of yourself.”
Pitt acknowledged that he used some of his own personal struggles for his role of Roy McBride in James Gray’s upcoming film “Ad Astra.” Pitt signed onto the role just months after Jolie’s divorce filing.
“I had family stuff going on. We’ll leave it at that,” he said. “The fact is, we all carry pain, grief and loss. We spend most of our time hiding it, but it’s there, it’s in you. So you open up those boxes.”
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Gray agreed that the actor’s personal life impacted his performance. “He definitely used the stimuli from his life,” Gray said. “Now, I didn’t get personal with him about it at all — I don’t think it’s my business, or even my job — but he investigated the essence of the character through himself.”
Gray also went on to talk about why Pitt was MIA during the 2017 Oscars, where the movie he produced, “Moonlight,” won best picture. The actor was apparently enjoying a spaghetti dinner at Gray’s house during the awards show. It was during the dinner that Gray’s wife, who was watching the ceremony, told Pitt of the history-making Oscars mistake in which “La La Land” was announced as best picture before declaring “Moonlight” as the winner in a correction.
“He wasn’t unappreciative, obviously, but Brad won’t get caught up in pomp and circumstance. I think he knows how to stay centered,” Gray recalled of Pitt’s reaction to the win.
Along with “Moonlight,” his production company Plan B has backed other features like “12 Years a Slave,” “If Beale Street Could Talk” and “Selma.” But as far any future acting gigs are concerned, there may not be many leading roles in Pitt’s future, as he revealed his priorities and interests are changing, describing acting as “a younger man’s game.”
“It’ll be fewer and farther in between for me, just because I have other things I want to do now,” Pitt said. “When you feel like you’ve finally got your arms around something, then it’s time to go get your arms around something else.”