Court forces Angelina Jolie to release non-disclosure agreements

LOS ANGELES — Angelina Jolie must produce eight years’ worth of non-disclosure agreements, a court has ordered, as part of her legal battle with ex-husband Brad Pitt over their French winery.

Judge Lia Martin ruled that the Academy Award-winning actor has to provide all the NDAs related to her ownership of Château Miraval, a winery in the south of France that the pair bought in 2014.

Jolie sold her shares in the winery, but alleges that Pitt had refused to let her. In April, she filed a motion to release communications from Pitt’s legal team requiring her to sign an “expansive” NDA before being allowed to sell.

Pitt’s lawyers reacted by asking the judge to compel Jolie to submit the NDAs she’s signed in the past. Now, Jolie must release these NDAs within 60 days.

The team behind Pitt has claimed that these NDAs will strike a “significant blow to the credibility” of Jolie’s case and that she did act against her contractual obligations to Pitt when she sold the shares in winery to Russian oligarch Yuri Shefler.

However, there are questions as to whether releasing these NDAs could come back to bite Pitt. Jolie’s lawyer Paul Murphy has said they are “more than happy to turn them over.”

He continues that the ruling “opens the door to discovery on all issues related to Pitt’s abuse.”

While this might seem like a simple business transaction between a divorced couple becoming unnecessarily personal, the rift between the two A-list actors is well publicised for Jolie’s allegations of Pitt’s physical and verbal abuse.

The pair made headlines when they started an affair on the set of Mr. & Mrs. Smith while Pitt was still married to Jennifer Anniston in 2005. Newly anointed as Hollywood’s power couple ‘Brangelina’, they married in Château Miraval in 2014, which they had originally leased in 2008 and bought that year.

Jolie and Pitt have six children together, three of whom were adopted. In 2016, the pair announced they were separated and Jolie filed for divorce. Their divorce was finalized in 2019.

In 2016, Jolie wanted to sell her shares of the winery but negotiations with Pitt broke down over his requirement she sign an NDA “that would have contractually prohibited her from speaking outside of court about Pitt’s physical and emotional abuse of her and their children”, she alleged.

Jolie filed a legal complaint against Pitt that described his physical and verbal abuse as the family traveled from France to California. “Pitt choked one of the children and struck another in the face” and “grabbed Jolie by the head and shook her,” wrote the complaint.

It seems that if Jolie is forced to release all the NDAs relating to the sale of the winery, it could include details of this alleged incident. For the moment though, both legal teams seem to be happy to comply. — Euronews

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