When it comes to perception in Hollywood, Jennifer Aniston knows a thing or two.
Trying to break out of a certain mold, The Morning Show star opened up about her experiences during The Hollywood Reporter’s annual drama actress roundtable discussion with Helena Bonham Carter, Janelle Monáe, Reese Witherspoon, Rose Byrne and Zendaya.
Aniston said that she couldn’t escape ‘Rachel from Friends,’ and that The Good Girl was the first time she got to really shed whatever the Rachel character was, and it was such a relief to her to be able to disappear into someone who wasn’t that.
She continued that even so, she remembers the panic that set over her, thinking that maybe everybody else is seeing something she isn’t seeing – which is she’s only that girl in the New York apartment with the purple walls, so she was almost doing it for herself just to see if other than that she could do something, and because she’s doing it in front of the world, it was terrifying.
As Friends was winding down, The Good Girl came out in 2002. Aniston spent much of her time on the big screen with roles in comedies like Horrible Bosses, Rumor Has It…, The Break-Up and The Switch after Friends ended in 2004. Opposite Witherspoon, she returned to TV in a major way in The Morning Show. The series chronicled a popular morning news program’s behind-the-scenes drama which deals with the fallout of an anchor’s sexual misconduct. For her work, Aniston won a Screen Actors Guild Award and was nominated for a Golden Globe, and for playing Alex Levy in the Apple TV series, she’s getting Emmy buzz.
She said that she just fought with herself and who she was in this industry forever, and it was about constantly trying to prove that she’s more than that person – but in getting older, there is such a freedom because altogether, you just stop giving a crap.
The Morning Show is one of Aniston’s most high-profile dramatic roles in Hollywood aside from Cake and The Good Girl. Byrne cited the tendency for actors to get pigeonholed in one camp or another – she got her start in American TV on the legal drama Damages and since then has gone on to have roles in comedy flicks such as Bridesmaids and The Spy.- Advertisement -
Aniston said that everybody doesn’t think you can do the drama once you play comedy; and everybody doesn’t think you can do comedy if you’re only seen as a dramatic actor. She concluded that everybody forgets the fact that they’re actors and that they actually have it all in there – it’s just about finding and accessing it and getting the material.