“I wanted to bring my mom, but I couldn’t,” Brad Pitt joked earlier this year when accepting his Golden Globe. “Because, any woman I stand next to, they say I’m dating…and it would just be awkward.”
Indeed, ever since Pitt announced his split from Angelina Jolie three-and-half years ago, the tabloid media has inferred that the actor is dating just about any woman he’s spotted within three feet of. He’s been linked to an Oscar-winning actresses, an MIT Media Lab professor, and even a woman named Lydia who he met at a coffee shop (this is to say nothing of all the Jennifer Aniston reunion fan fiction out there). But each rumor cycle has amounted to next to nothing. Pitt, who is still legally married to Jolie, has remained publicly single since the split, much to the disappointment of the celebrity gossip–industrial complex, we’re sure.
That hasn’t stopped inquiring minds from speculating. Over the weekend, Pitt was spotted at the musician Thundercat’s concert in Los Angeles with a supposed mystery woman. TMZ ran with the angle first. Another website asked, “Brad Pitt spotted with mystery woman at Thundercat concert: Was it Jennifer Aniston?” (It most certainly was not). As it tends to, the Internet once again exploded over Pitt’s presence near a woman.
It turns out, however, that the mystery woman wasn’t much of a mystery to begin with. She’s one of the stars of a beloved sitcom, and a known member of Pitt’s new inner circle. Not Aniston, but rather Alia Shawkat.
We’ve already gone through this news cycle before. The pair were spotted together at various art-gallery openings, as well as a performance of Mike Birbiglia’s one-man show The New One, last year. The official word was that the pair were just good friends, and enjoyed the same cultural activities. The latest spotting only reinforces that idea—it occurred at a concert, after all.
Unfortunately, all these dating rumors and mystery women only serve to obscure the post-separation story line we’re more interested in: the emergence of Pitt as total hipster. It’s not as if Pitt wasn’t noted for his interests in arts and culture before, but he’s really gone all in over the past few years. He’s into making pottery, listening to Frank Ocean, and checking out art installations. Sometimes those pursuits happen to bring him into contact with women, as one would expect. Unfortunately, “Brad Pitt Suddenly Really Into Abstract Expressionism” doesn’t make nearly as juicy of a headline.
A Photographic Guide To Everyone Brad Pitt Has Dated
A pre-divorce Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt arrive at the premiere of By The Sea in Hollywood, in November 2015. The couple were together from 2005-2016.
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie attend the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence and Conflict in London in June 2014.The couple were together from 2005-2016.
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, who met on the set of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, arrive for the premiere of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008). The couple were together from 2005-2016.
Where it all began: Brad Pitt and then-girlfriend Robin Givens in Los Angeles. The couple were together from 1986-1987.
Actress Shalene McCall and Brad Pitt enjoyed a brief dalliance after meeting on the set of TV show Windmills of the Gods. The couple dated in 1987.
McCall and Pitt are again spotted in Beverly Hills. The couple dated in 1987.
Brad Pitt and Jill Schoelen, who dated for one year, are spotted by paparazzi. The couple were together from 1988-1989.
On-set co-stars, Brad Pitt and Jill Schoelen enjoyed a brief relationship that drew great media attention. The couple dated in 1987.
Brad Pitt and Jill Schoelen at the 20/20 Club in Los Angeles. The couple dated in 1987.
Brad Pitt & Christina Applegate during 1989 MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles, California. The couple were together from 1988-1989.
Christina Applegate and Brad Pitt spotted again in 1989. The couple were together from 1988-1989.
Brad Pitt and actress Juliette Lewis enjoyed a lengthy long relationship in the public eye. Here they are in 1991. The couple were together from 1989-1993.
Brad Pitt and Juliette Lewis at the AMC Theater in Santa Monica, for the premiere of Thelma & Louise (1991). The couple were together from 1989-1993.
Brad and Gwyneth Paltrow attend the Hamlet Broadway Play Opening Night Performance in 1995, in New York City. The couple were together from 1994-1997.
Gwyneth Paltrow and Brad Pitt, 1996. The couple were together from 1994-1997.
Brad Pitt and girlfriend actress Gwyneth Paltrow arrive before the 68th Annual Academy Awards on March 25, 1996 in Los Angeles, California. The couple were together from 1994-1997.
Brad Pitt and actress Gwyneth Paltrow attend The Devil’s Own New York City premiere on March 13, 1997, in New York City. The couple were together from 1994-1997.
Actress Claire Forlani and actor Brad Pitt attend the 50th Annual Writers Guild of America Awards in 1998, in Beverly Hills, California. The couple dated in 1998.
Brad and Jennifer attend the Rock Star premiere in 2001 in Hollywood. The couple were together from 1998-2005.
Actress Jennifer Aniston and actor Brad Pitt attend The Mexican Westwood premiere in 2001. The couple were together from 1998-2005.
Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston, married for five years, appear here at the 51st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, in 1999. The couple were together from 1998-2005.
The couple, thought to be an American institution, divorced in 2005. Here the couple make an appearance at the 59th Annual Golden Globe Awards. The couple were together from 1998-2005.