When actors Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie purchased a controlling stake in Chateau Miraval, a vineyard in southeast France, they liked it so much they eventually got married there.
Now the pair are divorced, and Pitt is suing Jolie for selling her stake in the Miraval estate.
Pitt is accusing his ex-wife of seeking to undermine his investment in the wine estate, which has grown into “a multimillion-dollar international success story,” according to a complaint filed in Los Angeles yesterday (Feb. 17). He’s reportedly seeking monetary damages, legal fees, and for the sale of Jolie’s stake to be voided.
The couple bought the Miraval estate for about €25,000 in 2008, with Pitt contributing about 60% of the purchase price. The actor says that when he and Jolie divorced in 2019, they had a “mutual understanding” that they couldn’t sell off their respective stakes in the vineyard without getting permission from the other person.
Pitt found out in October that Jolie had sold her stake in Miraval to Tenute del Mondo, a wine group controlled by the Russian billionaire Yuri Shefler. At the time, the CEO of Tenute del Mondo’s parent company Stoli said the company was “thrilled to have a position alongside Brad Pitt as curators of their extraordinary vintages.”
But Pitt says he never agreed to the sale. The lawsuit claims the acquisition deprived Pitt of the “right to enjoy his private home” on the Miraval estate, “and to oversee the business he developed from scratch.”
In the years that Pitt and Jolie owned Miraval together, they cashed in on the growing popularity of rosé wine by producing and selling it out of the Provençal estate. In 2013 a Miraval wine with the couple’s name on it was ranked number one in the world by the trade magazine Wine Spectator.
The complaint claims Miraval is now “one of the world’s most highly regarded producers of rosé wine,” bringing in $50 million annually, thanks to Pitt, who has “poured money and sweat equity into the wine business.” Chateau Miraval was valued at $164 million when the couple divorced. Jolie was one of the highest-paid actresses in the world in 2020, according to Forbes, earning nearly $36 million that year.
Jolie hasn’t yet commented on the lawsuit.