Today, Angelina Jolie is an acclaimed actress, filmmaker, humanitarian, and mother to numerous adopted children. She’s a champion of women’s rights and an advocate for refugees, conservation, and education. Jolie is practically Hollywood royalty.
But before she was the regal entertainment queen that we know her to be, she was a parent’s worst nightmare. From a strained family relationship to vials of blood and thoughts of death, Angelina Jolie has always done things her own unique way in Hollywood. Read on to learn about the dark side of Angelina Jolie that everyone seems to have forgotten about, and what she’s like today behind closed doors.
Painful Toys In The Bedroom
Particularly when she was younger, Jolie has been open about her preferences in the bedroom. In a revealing interview with Barbara Walters on ABC’s 20/20, she explained how knives were a part of one of her first sexual encounters.
Jolie was in her preteens and living with her mother when she “got out knives” and she and her partner “had a night where we attacked each other.” Jolie had to hide it from her mother and wear bandages underneath her clothes.
At Age 14, She Was Already Living With Her Boyfriend
Jolie’s first serious relationship was with a boy when she was only 14. She was in high school at the time and still living with her mother. The relationship was so serious that she had her boyfriend move in and live with her, and her mom actually allowed it.
Reflecting back on the strange, young relationship, Jolie says that it allowed to her explore her “first relationship in a safe way.” Rather than being reckless on the streets, living with her boyfriend allowed them to stay safe at home.
Self-Harm Led Her To Almost Commit Suicide
As a teenager, the combination of bullying and feeling like an outsider meant that Jolie turned to self-harm. Years later, Jolie admitted that self-harm was “somehow therapeutic” to her because the “ritual” of cutting herself made her feel alive.
This was compacted with insomnia and an eating disorder that left her very unhappy and alone. Jolie twice suffered episodes of depression that led her to plan her suicide, but thankfully, she never followed through.
She’s Tried “Just About Every Drug Possible”
During her “wild child” period in her teen years, Jolie admits that she tried “just about every drug possible.” Jolie’s drug of choice for many years was heroin, but she’s also admitted to being heavily addicted to cocaine, ecstasy, and LSD.
While she’s long ended her drug abuse, she admits that they were a tool for her to self-medicate against various mental illnesses she was dealing with in her teens.
It Was Her Mother, Not Her Father, That Inspired Her To Act
While you might think having a legendary father as an actor would be enough to get someone interested in the industry, Jolie hated her father. Instead, it was from watching films with her mother that she decided to take a chance and try acting.
Jolie’s mother enrolled her in modeling classes, to begin with, but it was unsuccessful. Finally, by age 16, Jolie enrolled in acting classes and began to follow her passions.
Vials Of Blood
During her relationship with Billy Bob Thornton, the two made headlines for appearing at red carpet events with Jolie wearing a vial of his blood around her neck. They would also make out frequently on the red carpet for all to see.
When asked later about the vials of blood, Jolie told ABC that she “wanted him to feel good” and thought a vial of blood was something “a wife would do for her husband.”
A Brief Desire To Work With Dead Bodies
While Jolie was training to be an actor, she briefly dropped out of classes to become a funeral director. Her obsession with death and dead bodies had reached a new level. She said when her grandfather died, she was upset about how the funeral was organized and wanted to do it herself.
Jolie began taking at-home courses to become a funeral director and even began to study embalming techniques. The phase didn’t last long before her passion for acting returned.
Rumors Of Incest
Jolie continued making headlines at the 2000 Academy Awards. There, she won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for Girl, Interrupted then to celebrate, shared a steamy French kiss with brother James Haven.
Both of them have downplayed the kiss over the years and insisted they’re just incredibly close. After their father left the family, James and Angelina “only ever had each other.” Close relationship or not, their sibling love allegedly always made Billy Bob Thornton uncomfortable.
Her Childhood Makes Her Feel Sick
Reflecting back on her childhood, Jolie says that the unhealthy relationships that were caused by her father leaving makes her feel sick. Her legendary father, the actor Jon Voight, left the family when Jolie was barely even a year old. It didn’t take Jolie long to learn her father left because of an affair which has made her hate liars and cheaters.
Because of her father’s infidelity, she became extremely faithful in relationships and refused to make the same mistakes he did.
She Was Severely Bullied
It’s hard to imagine a natural beauty like Jolie being bullied for her appearance, but kids never hold back. Jolie attended Beverly Hills High School where she was teased and bullied for being too thin and “for wearing glasses and braces.”
It didn’t help that she also felt isolated because most of the other kids at school were from affluent families, while her mother struggled month-to-month to provide.
She’s Covered In Strange Tattoos
Jolie isn’t afraid to show off her skin on the red carpet and that means we’ve all got to see her wide range of tattoos. Most famously, she has an ‘H’ tattooed on her wrist in honor of her brother, James Haven, and a large cross.
Other tattoos include the Japanese Kanji symbol for death, a dragon, various Native American symbols, and a quote from Tennessee Williams. She has covered up and had some of her tattoos laser removed.
She’s Not On Good Terms With Her Father
Many people don’t know it, but Jolie’s father is the famous actor Jon Voight. He was married to Jolie’s mother for only five years when he filed for divorce and left the family. Jolie has a rocky relationship with her father and was estranged from him for years.
While she used his last name in her early years of acting, the relationship eventually became so estranged that Angelina dropped “Voight” and went by her middle name, “Jolie.”
A Very Strange First Marriage
In 1996, when Jolie was only 21, she began a relationship with British actor Jonny Lee Miller, who she had met on the set of her first film Hackers. The two married in a unique ceremony that included Jolie wearing black leather pants and a white t-shirt that had Jonny’s name written on the back in blood.
The two were only together for a year but Jolie credit Jonny with one of the reasons she cleaned up her act and became drug-free.
Another Odd Wedding Outfit
If the leather pants and blood-stained white t-shirt wasn’t weird enough, Jolie tried to top it with her 2000 marriage to actor Billy Bob Thornton. Following a whirlwind two-month romance, Jolie and Thornton eloped and got married.
Since they didn’t have much time to plan, Jolie wore blue jeans and a grey tank top while Thornton worked a button down shirt and baseball cap. It’s not exactly a fairytale wedding.
She Almost Married A Woman
There was a time when Jolie was set to marry another woman. The only problem was she was already married to a man. Jolie is one of the few openly bisexual stars in Hollywood and has admitted that one of her first relationships was with a girl.
At the time she was married to Thornton, she was experimenting with model Jenny Shimizu. Jolie even considered her to be a girlfriend and said she “fell in love with Jenny the first second I saw her.”
A Possible Relationship With Rosie O’Donnell
At first, it might not seem like Jolie and comedian Rosie O’Donnell are a good fit, but O’Donnell says quite the opposite. The two met while appearing at the same time on The Howard Stern Show.
O’Donnell says that she felt something was there between them and asking Jolie for her phone number. They had one date planned but it fell through. Jolie has never commented on the rumors, but O’Donnell has said that Angelina is “scary and sexy at the same time.”
Living Past 40 Was A Milestone
Jolie never expected to make it past the age of 40 for two reasons. The first is that cancer runs in her family. He mother, aunt, and grandmother all died of ovarian and breast cancer. Due to this, she opted to undergo a voluntary double mastectomy in 2013.
She also believed that her wild ways as a child would kill her. Looking back, she’s happy to be alive but never expected to survive substance abuse, mental illness, and a rocky home life.
Roles That Are Cooler Than Reality
Jolie has never hidden her wild past and she believes it continued on into her early days of Hollywood because of the roles she got. One of her first gigs was as model Gia Carangi in the biopic Gia. Jolie also famously played adventurist Lara Croft and hacker Kate Libby.
While her roles were fun and exciting, Jolie admits that she went through a period where she felt her “film characters were having more fun.”
She’s A Natural Blonde
It’s hard to believe that the beauty we know today is a natural blonde, but she was as cute as a button as a child. It was her mother’s choice to push Jolie to the dark side and dye her hair.
Jolie says that after her mother did it once, she’s kept it dark ever since. Her dark hair and appearance are what she entered the entertainment business with, and she doesn’t want to change that.
Since She Started Acting, She’s Always Done Her Own Stunts
The wild child wasn’t about to let acting slow down her thrill-seeking ambitions. All throughout her career, Jolie is one of the few actors in Hollywood who insists on doing almost all of their own stunts. As Lara Croft, Jolie performed more than 80 percent of the stunts.
She also trained in knife throwing and martial arts for her role as Croft and for the films Mr. and Mrs. Smith and Salt.
Firing Back Against Cheating Rumors
Who could forget the highly publicized divorce between Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston? It was revealed the divorce was partially due to a relationship that Pitt began with Jolie on the set of Mr. and Mrs. Smith.
While they were in a relationship before or after the divorce, Jolie has fought back against the rumors that say Pitt cheated on Aniston. She’s said that she “wouldn’t be attracted to a man who would cheat on his wife.”
It Took Nine Years For Her To Marry Brad Pitt
Maybe Jolie was just scared of marriage after her first two failed dramatically, or maybe she was just busy transforming into the leading lady we know today. Whatever the reason was, it took her nine years to finally marry Brad Pitt.
Instead of wearing pants and a t-shirt, Jolie did her third wedding the traditional way and wore a white ball gown. Of course, she made it unique and added a Versace veil covered in her kids’ drawings.
She’s Strangely Quiet About Her Divorce From Brad Pitt
For years, Brangelina seemed like an unbreakable couple. They had three adopted children and three of their own and were both top A-listers. Their fairytale came crashing down when Jolie filed for divorce in 2016.
To this day, we still don’t know what exactly inspired the divorce, but there have been allegations of drinking, drug abuse, and a violent household. In interviews, Jolie has chosen her words carefully and said that her kids are “healing” from the divorce.
Her Kids Don’t See Any Emotion
Like so many other mothers and human beings, Jolie has gone through long nights and broken relationships. Thanks to her rocky upbringing, she refuses to share any of her struggles with her children. Jolie said that she ‘was very worried about my mother growing up” and that she doesn’t want her kids to do the same.
How does Jolie let out her emotions then? She only cries in the shower.
Two Weird Celebrity Crushes
While most girls crush on pop stars and boy bands, Jolie was very different. Her two crushes growing up were Dr. Spock from Star Trek and Anthony Perkins from Psycho. These might be strange crushes for anyone else, but given what we know about Jolie’s childhood, they’re right on the money.
Jolie says she liked Dr. Spock for his aloof intellect, while Perkin’s psychotic demeanor was super intriguing for her.
Cambodia Changed Her Life
During the first year of her marriage to Billy Bob Thornton, Jolie traveling to Cambodia while filming Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. It was there that she met her first son, Maddox. Both Jolie and Thornton went back to Cambodia to adopt Maddox but it changed their relationship.
Jolie says after adopting Maddox, she decided to never be self-destructive again and be a good mother. On the other hand, Thornton was more focused on films and music. It wasn’t long until the two separated.
Flying High With Her Pilots License
Jolie has had her pilots license since 2004 and bought her first plane a year later in 2005. If you think it’s because the wild child wanted to feel free, it’s actually the exact opposite. In 2004, her adopted son Maddox was three years old and obsessed with planes.
Jolie says she figured if she could fly a plane by the time he was four, she’d “be like Superman to him.”
Don’t Forget About Her Music Video Roles
Before she was a Hollywood A-lister, many of Jolie’s early roles came from starring in music videos. In 1993, she landed her first music video part in “Rock And Roll Dreams Come True” by Meatloaf.
Since then she’s gone on to star in three other music videos by artists including The Lemonheads and Korn. Her most notable music video role was in 1997 for “Anybody Seen My Baby” by The Rolling Stones.
Now She Hides Behind Her Characters
In her early acting days, Jolie made it clear she wanted to be having more fun than the characters she played. Today, she has a very different outlook. Her wild years are behind her and she now likes to “hide behind the characters” the plays.
She attributes this change with her realizing that she actually isn’t very good with fame and that she’d prefer to be a private person and live outside of the limelight.
All About Giving Back
Now that she’s grown and evolved out of her wild childhood, Jolie has focused much of her efforts on humanitarian work. She’s known for advocating for refugees around the world and has even become an honorary citizen of Bosnia and Cambodia for her efforts.
Jolie also follows a strict rule and donates 1/3 of her money every year to charity. She famously sold the baby pictures of her twins for $14 million and gave it all to charity.