When it’s your job to report on red carpet events, you’re used to seeing photos of the world’s most beautiful women. But every so often, you come across a celebrity whose beauty is on a whole other level—and you completely understand why she is famous. Heck, she was born to be famous, with that unique arrangement of facial features.
I put Angelina Jolie in this category. After more than two decades in the spotlight, she’s not one of those “relatable,” “girl next door” celebs, like Jennifer Lawrence or Brie Larson. I think of her as an old-school, aspirational kind of starlet. She’s not like you or I, and she knows it.
The question is—did she always look this way? To find out, I dug way back in the photo archives, before she became a mom to six kids, before Brad Pitt, and before Billy Bob Thornton.
Angelina is 46 now, and this is how her look has evolved from 1997 until today.
From 1997-1999: Hollywood Wild Child
At the 1997 HBO 25th Anniversary Celebration
Our first shot of Angelina dates back to 1997, when she was just 22 years old. Already, she is brimming with confidence on the red carpet—no doubt because she grew up under the wing of her famous father, Jon Voight, and had been acting as a child and a teen. She’s sporting the short haircut and skinny eyebrows that were oh-so-popular in the late ‘90s (also see: Gwyneth Paltrow). But underneath it all, you can still sense the star quality.
At the 1998 Los Angeles Premiere of ‘Playing by Heart’
Ange is famous for her full lips and almond-shaped eyes, and here we can see that they were always there—not to mention the charisma that oozes out of this picture! Remember, celebs weren’t doing hyaluronic acid lip fillers in the 1990s; the only option was silicone, which I doubt could look this good. (Jessica Biel’s unnatural results would be more likely.) However, there is one feature that I suspect she later tweaked: her nose.
At the 1999 Los Angeles Premiere of ‘The Bone Collector’
See what I mean about her nose? It’s totally normal—for a civilian nose—but by Hollywood standards, it’s obviously wider through the bridge, with a more prominent, boxy tip. At this time, her naturally brunette hair had been lightened to blonde for her breakout role in Girl, Interrupted.