Brad Pitt Talks About Quitting Booze And Cigarettes, And How He Might Possibly Have A Case Of Face Blindness

June 22, 2022 / Posted by:

No, that’s not Harry Styles in old man makeup to play the Dean Stockwell part in a Gucci-sponsored Gen Z remake of Blue Velvet. It’s Brad Pitt on the cover of the August issue of GQ, and inside the magazine, Brad brings the same kind of dreamy symbolism he’s bringing to that cover, what with the pond floating and the flowers and the little lizard riding his chest like a $20 pool floatie from Target. And I mean that in the most literal way. The interview opens up with Brad discussing a recurring spooky dream he’s had for nearly five years, and it eventually evolves into conversations about life, love, smokes (or lack thereof), ceramics, gold-digging, depression, poetry, and the fact that Brad Pitt cannot remember the faces of most of the people he meets.

Brad has Bullet Train coming out in August, so it’s that time for him (aka promo tour time). With that comes a long interview with GQ, and a glossy, sort of sleazy-ish photo spread in a variety of high fashion items. Brad is giving you a heaping handful of director’s cut cameo in Boogie Nights, with a little failed-audition-for-a-Baz Luhrmann-David Bowie-biopic, which you can see if you scroll straight to the bottom below.

GQ picked Brad’s brain about plenty of stuff, and it’s the kind of interview that could be technically classified as research because you truly learn something new about Brad with every paragraph. For instance, I learned that Brad better keep a TMJ specialist on call for the future. Because all throughout the interview, the man chews nicotine mints like his jaw is the bus from Speed and it will explode if it doesn’t remain in perpetual motion. But all for a good reason: he recently quit smoking, just like how he quit drinking six years ago.

Pitt offers me a nicotine mint. He chews them mindlessly. He explains that he quit smoking during the pandemic after realizing that simply cutting back on cigarettes wasn’t going to suffice – he had to cut them out. “I don’t have that ability to do just one or two a day,” he says. “It’s not in my makeup. I’m all in. And I’m going to drive into the ground. I’ve lost my privileges.”

It’s one of several radical changes he’s made to his health over the past few years. After Jolie filed for divorce, in 2016, he got sober and spent a year and a half attending Alcoholics Anonymous.

As for that dream he keeps having, Brad says that for nearly five years, he would doze off and dream that he was being chased and eventually stabbed. Brad says he finally kicked his stabbing dream by simply asking “Why” while he was asleep. Oh, if only every solution was so simple, but there’s one problem that Brad can’t solve, and that’s how to avoid saying, “Nice to meet you, I’m Brad Pitt” to established casual acquaintances at a party.

Pitt has talked in the past about a curious problem he has in social settings, especially at parties. He struggles to remember new people, to recognize their faces, and he fears it’s led to a certain impression of him: that he’s remote and aloof, inaccessible, self-absorbed. But the truth is, he wants to remember the people he meets and he’s ashamed that he can’t. He’s never been officially diagnosed but thinks he may suffer from a specific condition: prosopagnosia, an inability to recognize people’s faces that’s otherwise known as face blindness. “Nobody believes me!” he cries.

Brad also talked about his feelings, specifically during a conversation about how music makes him feel. It makes him feel good, as we learn. But we also learn that Brad was feeling pretty damn low for a few years of his life.

“What is that about?” Pitt asks. “Because music fills me with so much joy. I think joy’s been a newer discovery, later in life. I was always moving with the currents, drifting in a way, and onto the next. I think I spent years with a low-grade depression, and it’s not until coming to terms with that, trying to embrace all sides of self – the beauty and the ugly – that I’ve been able to catch those moments of joy.”

Hmmm…I wonder what “ugly” he’s referring to? He’s been fighting with his ex-wife Angelina Jolie for coming up on six years now. So my guess is that he’s thankful to catchy any moment of joy that presents itself in between the rage-filled phone calls with his legal team. That’s maybe why he’s crunching so many nicotine mints. “Brad needs another roll of mints! Angelina just responded to my latest lawsuit filing, and Brad’s getting stressed out! Brad can’t go back to two packs of American Spirits a day! And throw on some music, Brad needs to stay zen.

Pic: Elizaveta Porodina/GQ

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