Life's a beach for Brad and Angelina.
The sexy Mr. and Mrs. Smith costars are caught in the midst of yet another wave of speculation about their relationship after they were snapped together by a paparazzo on the sandy shores of an unidentified African country believed to be Morocco.
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The photos, which depict Pitt, Jolie and Jolie's 3-year-old son, Maddox, enjoying a day on the beach, set off a bidding war between various publications desperate to be the first to publish the "evidence" that Pitt and Jolie were perhaps more than just coworkers.
London's Sun was the first to run the photos in Monday's edition, while Us Weekly quickly snapped up the U.S. rights for a reported $1 million in order to run the pics in its May 9 edition, on stands Wednesday.
(Somewhere out there, a newly rich shutterbug is cackling in glee.)
Of course, in spite of Us Weekly shelling out a cool mil for the "exclusive rights" to the photos, said pics were widely available almost immediately--for free, natch--on the Internet.
And one thing's for certain--if these pictures are speaking the proverbial thousand words, "yawn," "boredom" and "tame" must be among them.
In one shot, Pitt is shown in deep discussion with young Maddox, presumably over sand castle architecture. In another, Jolie, clad in a long black garment, carries various plastic sand toys.
Still another picture shows Pitt disembarking from a plane and carrying his own bag. In subsequent shots, he's still carrying it.
Shocking, we know.
A spokesman confirmed that Pitt, who is a special ambassador in Nelson Mandela's struggle against HIV and AIDS, was in Ethiopia from Saturday to late Monday, visiting orphans of the AIDS pandemic devastating the continent.
Fellow do-gooder Jolie is a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations refugee agency.
Obviously, it's not the first time Pitt and Jolie have been the focus of the rumor mill. Speculations about the comely couple's relationship have been rampant since Pitt and soon-to-be ex-wife Jennifer Aniston announced their separation in January. In March, Aniston filed for divorce, citing "irreconcilable differences."
Earlier this month, Us Weekly ran a cover story featuring separate photos of the stars under the headline "It's True!" The accompanying article included quotes from employees at the Parker Palm Springs hotel and other unnamed sources who claimed they saw Pitt and Jolie being affectionate during a weekend retreat at the California resort.
"They were kissing and holding each other. He was rubbing her back. It looked romantic," one so-called witness gabbed to the magazine.
However, both Pitt's rep and Pitt himself strenuously denied the story.
"This particular story is completely untrue," Pitt told Access Hollywood in an interview.
"Because these tabloids are making so much money, and yes, I consider Us Weekly a tabloid, they go to great lengths to corroborate their stories, whether they are true or not."
This time around, neither stars' camp is commenting on the photo frenzy at hand.
Call us skeptics, but all we're saying is Mr. and Mrs. Smith opens June 10. And there's no publicity like free publicity.
Angelina Jolie Voight
Birthdate: June 4, 1975
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California
Occupations: Actor, Model
Quote: "There was a time when I was really going to give up acting--right after Foxfire. I was trying to find characters with a certain strength and things going on, but I was always disappointed. Wallace was the first thing I did where I felt their ideas were better than mine." --GQ, December 1998
Claim to Fame: Earned raves for her performance as supermodel Gia Carangi, in the HBO biopic Gia (1998)
Husband: Billy Bob Thornton, actor, director, screenwriter; acted together in Pushing Tin (1999); eloped to Las Vegas May 5, 2000; filed for divorce, July 18, 2002
Timothy Hutton, actor; dated 1998-99
Husband: Jonny Lee Miller, actor; married March 1996; divorced 1999
Father: Jon Voight, actor; separated from Jolie's mother 1976
Mother: Marcheline Bertrand, former actress; born 1950; part Iroquois Indian
Brother: James Haven Voight, director; born 1973; studied filmmaking at University of Southern California; directed sister in five student films
Son: Maddox Jolie, born in Cambodia as Rath Vibol, adopted by Jolie in 2002
1997: Golden Globe: Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Miniseries or Made-for-TV Movie, George Wallace
1998: National Board of Review: Breakthrough Performance Award, Playing by Heart; cited with Billy Crudup (Without Limits)
1998: Golden Satellite: Best Actress in a Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for TV, Gia
1998: Golden Globe: Best Actress in a Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for TV, Gia
1998: Screen Actors Guild: Female Actor (Television Movie or Miniseries), Gia
1999: Golden Globe: Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture, Girl, Interrupted
1999: Screen Actors Guild: Female Actor in a Supporting Role (Theatrical Motion Picture), Girl, Interrupted
1999: Oscar: Best Supporting Actress, Girl, Interrupted
2000: ShoWest: Supporting Actress of the Year
As a child, Jolie wanted to become a funeral director
Made stage debut playing a German dominatrix in Room Service
Lee Strasberg Theater Institute; enrolled at age 11
New York University; studied Film; attended night classes, 1997