Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux announced Thursday that they have separated.
The news had barely hit Twitter before fans of old-school Jennifer started breathlessly daydreaming: Maybe she’ll get back with Brad Pitt.
Aniston, 49, met 46-year-old Theroux in 2011. They got engaged the next year and married in a surprise ceremony in August 2015.
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Their joint statement said their decision to separate “was mutual and lovingly made at the end of last year. We are two best friends who have decided to part ways as a couple, but look forward to continuing our cherished friendship.
“Normally we would do this privately, but given that the gossip industry cannot resist an opportunity to speculate and invent, we wanted to convey the truth directly.
“Whatever else is printed about us that is not directly from us, is someone else’s fictional narrative. Above all, we are determined to maintain the deep respect and love that we have for one another.”
Tabloids began churning out marriage-on-the-rocks stories in January, reporting that Aniston had hired a divorce attorney.
They are “very different people,” one of the sources now blabbing about the relationship tells People.
In recent months, Aniston had reportedly spent most of her time in Los Angeles with her friends, while Theroux was in New York with his.
“Jennifer loves her life in Los Angeles, and if anything, she has grown more attached to being there,” one source told People. “Justin is not that comfortable or happy in Los Angeles all the time. He loves New York and always has.”
Though they said they decided at the end of last year to separate, they are known to have celebrated the new year together with their annual vacation to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
Just last week Aniston appeared on the cover of Architectural Digest. Inside were photos of the beautiful mid-century home she and Theroux share high above Los Angeles.
One passage offers a hint to the problems they faced in New York.
“The actress acquired the property in 2011, after selling her beloved Hal Levitt-designed home in L.A.’s Trousdale Estates enclave and attempting to relocate to Manhattan — a move ultimately thwarted by the rabid paparazzi that swarmed outside her Greenwich Village apartment building,” the magazine noted.
Theroux was Aniston’s second husband. She was married to Pitt from July 2000 to October 2005, a marriage that broke up in the glare of the tabloids after Pitt “fell in love” with his “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” co-star, Angelina Jolie.
Their alleged affair divided fans of all three actors, giving rise to “Team Jen” and subsequently one of Hollywood’s first couple nicknames — “Brangelina.”
Aniston and Pitt divorced in 2005. Pitt and Jolie were together for years — having children, adopting children — before they married in August 2014. Jolie filed for divorce in 2016 citing “irreconcilable differences.”
The internet has been abuzz with the possibility of Aniston rekindling the old days with Pitt, 54, who grew up in Springfield, Mo. But another source tells People that’s highly unlikely.
“They haven’t seen each other in ages,” said the source. “For well over a decade now they have lived totally separate lives and so not surprisingly, they have become totally different people than who they once were when they were together.
“They broke up, and they did it because they had serious issues,” says the source. “They’re not stupid. They remember why it didn’t work.”
Apparently fans don’t want to remember.