The couple was making their way through a gauntlet of fans and press toward the El Capitan Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard when all hell broke loose.
"Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt were signing autographs when a man jumped over the barrier and struck Mr. Pitt in the face," a Los Angeles Police Department spokesperson tells Yahoo.
Event security wrestled the man to the ground and detained him until LAPD arrived, took him to the Hollywood precinct, and arrested him for misdemeanor battery. He remains jailed on $20,000 bail.
Police identified the man as Vitalii Sediuk, 25. And while you might not recognize his name, you undoubtedly know his modus operandi. He's the gonzo Ukrainian "journalist" whose résumé is chock-full of similar encounters with A-listers at high-profile events.
Just last week, Sediuk bum-rushed the Cannes premiere of How to Train Your Dragon 2 and climbed under America Ferrera's gown, which led to his termination by the Ukrainian network 1+1 Media. Before that, he had red-carpet run-ins with Bradley Cooper and Leonardo DiCaprio, and gave hydrangea-hating Madonna a bouquet of the flowers at a 2011 Venice Film Festival press conference.
He infamously snuck into the Grammys in 2013 and tried to hijack Adele's statuette from unamused presenter Jennifer Lopez. Sediuk remains on probation for that stunt, which could result in a harsher penalty this time around.
Perhaps most notoriously, Sediuk was on the business end of a Will Smith slap after trying to smooch the actor during the 2012 Moscow premiere of Men in Black 3.
As for Pitt and Jolie, they handled the incident like the pros they are. Pitt brushed off the attack and was escorted into the theater without further drama as Jolie remained behind to work the carpet.
UPDATE May 29, 2014 at 11:45 a.m. PT: Sediuk's attorney, Anthony Willoughby, released the following statement to Yahoo: "Mr. Sediuk is presently charged with battery. He is not guilty of the charged offense. Law enforcement overreact when celebrities are concerned. This case is further evidence of this mindset."
- Arts & Entertainment
- Brad Pitt
- Angelina Jolie