updated 09/16/2011 AT 7:30 AM ET
•originally published 09/15/2011 AT 3:00 PM ET
Brad Pitt may appear to be on top of the world, but he insists that happiness is “overrated.”
“I put much more emphasis on being a satisfied man,” the actor, 47, tells Parade magazine in a revealing interview that will be published Sunday. “I’m satisfied with making true choices and finding the woman I love, Angie, and building a family that I love so much.”
Pitt describes his partner, Angelina Jolie, as “such a great mom,” and says starting a family with her was “one of the greatest, smartest things I ever did.”
“A family is a risky venture, because the greater the love, the greater the loss,” he adds. “That’s the trade-off.”
Things weren’t always so blissful, though. In the early days of his fame, Pitt struggled to deal with all of the attention he was getting, he tells Parade.
“I spent the ’90s trying to hide out, trying to duck the full celebrity cacophony,” he admits. “I started to get sick of myself sitting on a couch, holding a joint, hiding out. It started feeling pathetic. It became very clear to me that I was intent on trying to find a movie about an interesting life, but I wasn’t living an interesting life myself.”
“I think that my marriage had something to do with it,” he said. “Trying to pretend the marriage was something that it wasn’t.”
After some reports on Thursday interpreted Pitt’s remarks to be critical of Aniston, Pitt issued the following statement: “It grieves me that this was interpreted this way. Jen is an incredibly giving, loving and hilarious woman who remains my friend. It is an important relationship I value greatly. The point I was trying to make is not that Jen was dull, but that I was becoming dull to myself – and that, I am responsible for.”
Now, as tabloids continue to clamor over the fact that Pitt and Jolie have yet to officially tie the knot, it’s clear that their relationship has given Pitt the life he was searching for – and more.
“I’m so happy to have her,” Pitt says.