Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are preparing to tie the knot following her double mastectomy.

The 37-year-old actress - who made the drastic decision to have both her breasts removed after she was identified as carrying the BRCA1 cancer gene, which gave her an 87 per cent chance of developing breast cancer and a 50 per cent risk of ovarian cancer - is planning to marry her 49-year-old fiance 'sooner rather than later', after putting their wedding on hold so she could focus on recovering from the gruelling surgery and Brad could wrap up his latest movie.

A source close to the couple told the MailOnline website: 'Angie is keen on a wedding and the kids are clamouring for a marriage and keep asking Brad and Angie when it's happening. Brad has been caught up in production turmoil with his new film 'World War Z', so there's been no wedding planning as a result, but Angie has said it will happen sooner rather than later. They are all for all intents and purposes married, but it's become clear that it's important to them to make it official.'

The couple, who got engaged in 2011, previously admitted their six children, Maddox, 11, Pax, nine, Zahara, eight, Shiloh, six, and four-year-old twins Knox and Vivienne were putting them under pressure to make their union official. Brad said: 'I am getting more pressure from my kids, and it is something I want to do within their lifetime, but I also feel like the time has come.'

The actor praised his fiancee earlier yesterday as 'heroic' for making the decision to have her breasts removed and reconstructed. He said: 'Having witnessed this decision first hand, I find Angie's choice, as well as so many others like her, absolutely heroic. I thank our medical team for their care and focus. All I want for is for her to have a long and healthy life, with myself and our children. This is a happy day for our family.'

Angelina decided to be tested for the gene because she lost her 56-year-old mother Marcheline Bertrand to ovarian cancer in 2007. The Oscar-winning actress now only has a five per cent chance of developing breast cancer and she admitted her children were a big motivation for her to have the surgery because she wants to see them all grow up.