As she turns 40 today, Angelina Jolie belongs to that rare breed of celebs whose popularity transcends boundaries of countries, race and religion. She is as comfortable preening up in front of the cameras on Hollywood red carpet as she is surrounded by world leaders, holding forth on complex issues of realpolitik.
This year has been particularly important for the Hollywood royalty - both personally and professionally. Here are 5 reasons why 2015 was especially iconic for Angie before she hit the watershed 40th birthday.
1. Meet Mr and Mrs Pitt
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's August 23 wedding was full of whimsy. Right from their wedding planners - their brood of six - to Angie's veil which had drawings by the kids. After years of living together, the couple decided to say 'I do' for their children. And each child had a key role to play: Eldest sons Maddox, 13, and Pax, 10, walked their mom down the aisle; flower girls Zahara, 9, and Vivienne, 6, tossed petals gathered from the garden; and Shiloh, 8, and Knox, 6, served as ring bearers. The kids also helped write their parents' vows. And Pax baked the cake!
2. Diary of a surgery
After her preventive double mastectomy in 2013, Angelina Jolie had her ovaries removed this year as doctors gave her 50% chance of ovarian cancer. In a heartfelt article in NY Times, the actor - who lost her mother and aunt to cancer, wrote, "I feel feminine, and grounded in the choices I am making for myself and my family. I know my children will never have to say, 'Mom died of ovarian cancer.'"
3. Angelina stays Unbroken
This year saw Angelina taking the director's chair again with Unbroken. Her second outing as a director was quite close to her heart and was critically acclaimed. However, it was Maleficent's spectacular outing at the BO which again proved that few can compete with Angelina when it comes to getting all the attention. As the bad fairy-turned-good in this revisionist tale, she also championed a cause quite close to her heart - the use of rape to subjugate women.
4. Arise Dame Angelina
The actor received the Insignia of an Honorary Dame Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of St Michael and St George. The DGCM honour is in recognition of her campaigning against rape in war zones. Her work culminated in a landmark international summit in London on ending sexual violence in war zones.
5. 'Be different, cause trouble'
Angelina Jolie has never been afraid to be different. When she went to accept the best villain award at Nickelodeon awards, she brought the house down with this speech, "When I was little, like Maleficent, I was told that I was different, and I felt out of place. And too loud, too full of fire, never good at sitting still, never good at fitting in, and then one day I realised something... Something I hope you all realise... 'Different' is good! And as your villain, I would tell you to cause a little trouble. It's good for you." We can only say amen to that.