Brad Pitt discusses AA on The Project
Brad Pitt told Carrie Bickmore he's "enjoying the good stuff more" since his stint in Alcoholics Anonymous on The Project tonight.
Discussing his new role in Ad Astra, which sees the Hollywood A-lister play Roy McBride, an astronaut on a mission to discover the truth about his missing father, Pitt was candid about the benefits of open and frank discussions on mental health.
The movie star spent 18 months in AA following his split from Angelina Jolie.
"We all carry deep pains to different degrees and regrets," the 55-year-old said.
"We are very good, certainly in my culture, at burying those. I think (talking about) it leads to more well-rounded, certainly more comfortable existence with yourself and greater peace of mind and I find that you can enjoy the good stuff more," he said.
Pitt joined an all-male AA recovery group after his marriage to Angelina Jolie dramatically broke down three years ago.
"You had all these men sitting around being open and honest in a way I have never heard.
"It was this safe space where there was little judgment, and therefore little judgment of yourself.
"It was actually really freeing just to expose the ugly sides of yourself."
Pitt was forced to confront his weaknesses after his 11-year relationship with Jolie, which included five years of marriage, collapsed in September of 2016.
Jolie, who was reportedly "fed up" with her husband's drinking and marijuana use, pushed for sole physical custody of the couple's six children. The bitter custody battle included an investigation by family services into Pitt.
Pitt and Jolie married in August of 2014 after striking up a romance on the set of Mr & Mrs Smith, around the same time as Pitt's divorce from Friends actress Jennifer Aniston.
They went on to have three biological children, Shiloh, Knox and Vivienne, and adopt three more, Maddox, Pax and Zahara.
US media reported the final straw before their break-up was a 12-hour flight from France to Los Angeles, during which Pitt drank "heavily" and a frustrated Jolie demanded he "sober up".
Speaking to Bickmore tonight about his relationship with his kids, he said he's become better at "hearing them".
"I'm certainly better at listening, hearing them and asking them questions about how they feel instead of just trying to imprint one of my bits of wisdom on them," he revealed.
Earlier in the chat, when asked about his relationship with his own father, Pitt had said "there's friction" between fathers and sons.
"(With) sons and fathers, there's friction, questions, but, you know, at the same time, I see my dad in everything I do. My dad wanted to give me a better life than he had. He came from extreme poverty. And he did. You know, he came through. Even an abusive childhood to some degree and he gave me better and now it's up to me to give my kids better from that. I think it's more about really being able to be open. I mean truly open with them," he said.
The Project airs Sunday to Friday at 6.30pm on Network 10