Following her shocking split from Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie has powered up her girl squad.
Just eight days after the By the Sea
star filed for divorce
from her husband of two years, ET has learned that her closest female friends, Lady Arminka Helic and Chloe Dalton, may be encouraging a smear campaign
against the 52-year-old actor.
A source close to the Pitt-Jolie situation tells ET that the two women advising Jolie have been "fueling the actress' aggressive approach against Pitt" from the beginning. They were even with the family the day before Jolie filed the dissolution of marriage, playing baseball with some of the estranged couple's kids.
"Angelina is very close to Arminka and Chloe, and really has left her Hollywood circle in recent years to focus on politics and human rights," the source said, explaining that the 41-year-old actress -- who is a Special Envoy for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) -- first met Helic through her UN work a few years ago. "Angelina respects the two of them completely and doesn't make any decisions without them."
So who are these influential ladies?
According to the source, Helic -- a Bosnian foreign policy expert and member of the U.K. House of Lords -- used to serve as a special adviser to Britain's former Foreign Secretary William Hague, the man "really responsible for teaching Angelina about Bosnia." Hague is also credited for being "a close confidante to Angelina" while she was directing her 2011 movie, In the Land of Blood and Honey, in Bosnia.
Helic advises Jolie on any political issues the actress chooses to be involved in, the source added, and travels abroad with her every time she makes a trip. She also educates Jolie on issues surrounding war-torn countries, mainly in regard to women and children. What's more, it was Helic, according to the source, who encouraged Jolie to get involved with the London School of Economics' Centre for Women, Peace and Security
, where she's set to join the faculty as a guest professor in September 2017.
Like Helic, Dalton also has ties to Hague. She is the daughter of former ambassador Sir Richard Dalton, and worked in Hague's office as his speechwriter during the same time Jolie had worked with him.
Then, in 2015, Jolie, Helic and Dalton formed the Jolie Pitt Dalton Helic foundation, an organization which aims to help refugees, prevent violence against women and improve access to education. "We have been officially working together for a year and are very much looking forward to continuing our joint efforts on our shared international interests," Jolie told People
of their partnership at the time. The trio also previously worked together on the Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative to help end war zone rape.
Jolie is currently staying in a secluded, $12 million beachfront mansion rental
in Malibu, California, with the couple's six children -- Maddox, 15, Pax, 12, Zahara, 11, Shiloh, 10, and twins Vivienne and Knox, 8.
On Tuesday, Jolie's bodyguard was seen picking up pizza from D'Amore's Famous Pizza in the area around 6 p.m. According to an eyewitness, the bodyguard was alone and carried out four large pizza boxes, along with another bag of food. "We're not sure if it was just the kids eating it, and perhaps they over-ordered, but four pizzas for six kids averages to over five slices per kid," the eyewitness explained. "They must be really hungry!"
Earlier this week, an additional source told ET that Pitt, who was last seen in Croatia on Sept. 2, hopes to see his kids soon
and wants to resolve his issues with Jolie "amicably and privately."
"Every marriage has priorities and they have been able to navigate them up until now," the source said. "Brad has different priorities. He's a leading actor with movies coming out. She has her things she wants to do and no one is saying that's wrong."
"Her global ambitions are part of the current problem," the source continued. "I don't think anyone wants their kids all over the place." Hear more in the video below.