Alia Shawkat and Brad Pitt aren’t dating. The Search Party actress denied rumors that she was dating Pitt during an interview with Vulture published on Friday. The rumors that the two were dating began after Pitt and Shawkat were photographed visiting an art exhibit together. The two were then spotted attending Mike Birbiglia’s one-man-show together and seeing Kanye West’s opera Nebuchadnezzar.
“We’re not dating. We’re just friends,” she said during the interview.
She said that, after the rumors began to circulate online, she got a flurry of questions from people in her own life about them.
“All my friends were like ‘What’s going on?’ and sending me photos. I just felt overwhelmed. It’s that feeling of being naked in school, like, oh my God, everyone’s looking at me,” Shawkat remembered.
Shawkat, who also starred on Arrested Development, recalled the amount of press attention that came with the rumors. Although she’s been working in Hollywood since she was 9, she said that the media attention has never been as intense as it was during that period.
“I’ve gotten press, but not like that,” she said.
When they were first spotted out together, a source told People that there wasn’t anything happening between the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood star and Shawkat. The source said that Pitt has many friends who share his interest in art, and Shawkat is one of them.
“Brad loves the art world. He has a large group of artist friends that he hangs out with. Several are women, but he isn’t dating them. He just loves surrounding himself with good friends,” the insider said at the time.
The source added that Pitt is committed to keeping his friends as friends, and doesn’t look to them for romance. Pitt, who has kept his relationship life out of public view since his divorce from Angelina Jolie in 2016, has sparked rumors with plenty of actresses in the past.
A photo of Pitt and former flame Jennifer Aniston went viral in January and led to wild speculation that the two were going to resume a romantic relationship. The photo in question was taken backstage at the SAG Awards after both Aniston and Pitt picked up prizes. Aniston won for her work on The Morning Show, while Pitt had won for his supporting performance in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. The photo showed the two grabbing each other as they congratulated one another for their respective victories.