In a Vulture interview with Rachel Handler, actress Alia Skawkat, known for her heavily freckled face, bee-stung nose and short curly hair, has welcomely dismissed speculation that she and Brad Pitt, whom she’s been randomly photographed with for several months, are doing the hunka-chunka. They are, she says, nothing more than pally-wallies.

Handler #1: “The publicity resulting from the Pitt photos was annoying for Shawkat, [although] the whole thing was ultimately positive from an image perspective, the sort of publicity many a celebrity has quite literally paid for. But the second round of public attention — a video of her with heavy stakes — was painful, especially for a queer woman of color (Shawkat is half-Iraqi).”

Handler #2: “The stories that [pushed] the dating narrative seemed perplexed by the whole thing — the word quirky was used more than once to describe Shawkat. ‘To them it’s like, ‘We don’t get it! This girl is weird! She’s so different! Why are they hanging out?’, [Shawkat] says about the tabloids, laughing. ‘You get too close to the prom king, and all of a sudden, everyone’s like, ‘Well, who is this bitch?’”

HE’s initial Pitt-Shawkat riff was posted on 6.10.20: