The Academy Award winner spoke to GQ for its latest cover story and explained he was conned by an unnamed man who convinced him that the property had a hidden value to it.
Pitt, who shared the home with ex-wife Angelina Jolie, purchased the property for $60 million in 2008, and the supposed swindler told the “Ocean’s 11” actor that the estate was worth far more than what the power couple paid for because of the supposed hidden treasure.
The “Seven” actor said the swindler told him that there were “millions of dollars worth of gold” from the medieval times which had been “taken from the Levant during the Crusades and buried on the grounds,” Pitt told GQ.
“I got obsessed,” Pitt said. “Like for a year, this was all I could think about, just the excitement of it all. Maybe it has something to do with where I grew up, because in the Ozark Mountains,” near his childhood home in Missouri, “there were always stories of hidden caches of gold.”
Pitt says the unnamed swindler also successfully targeted and pitched him as a potential investor in a radar company that could be used to dig up the treasure, Huffington Post reported. It remains unclear if it was the same equipment that he bought for the dig.
However, the “Moneyball” eventually realized he was duped, telling GQ he was “pretty foolish in the end.”
“It was just the hunt that was exciting,” he add.
Pitt and Jolie’s 35-room mansion estate, Miraval, is located in the village of Correns in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region in southeastern France. The estate features a moat, fountains, aqueducts, a pond, a chapel, and a vineyard, the New York Post reported.
The estate also features a 13th-century chapel where the couple wed in 2014. They would divorce just five years later.
The Miraval estate does sit along an ancient Roman trade route, Huffington Post reported. Prior to Pitt and Jolie owning the estate, it was used by bands like AC/DC, Muse and Pink Floyd, who recorded part of their seminal 1979 album, “The Wall,” at the grounds, according to People.