Jennifer Aniston is opening up about the struggle of letting go of her character Rachel from Friends!
Aniston attended The Hollywood Reporter’s Drama Actress Roundtable where she chatted with fellow actresses about their experiences. Some of the attendees included Reese Witherspoon, Janelle Monáe, Zendaya, Helena Bonham Carter, and Rose Byrne.
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Aniston spoke about how difficult it was for her to “shed” Rachel from her identity since she played the role for 10 years from 1994-2004. “You just exhaust yourself,” said Aniston. “I mean, I could not get Rachel Green off of my back for the life of me.”
“I could not escape ‘Rachel from Friends,’ ” she said, “and it’s on all the time and you’re like, ‘Stop playing that f—— show!’ ”
She shared that she was only really able to shed the Rachel image when she was cast in the 2002 film The Good Girl which follows her character Justine as she has an affair with a clerk at the discount store where she works.
“The Good Girl was the first time I got to really shed whatever the Rachel character was, and to be able to disappear into someone who wasn’t. That was such a relief to me. But I remember the panic that set over me, thinking, ‘Oh God, I don’t know if I can do this. Maybe they’re right,’ ” she recalled.
” ‘Maybe everybody else is seeing something I’m not seeing, which is you are only that girl in the New York apartment with the purple walls,’ ” Aniston continued.
“So, I was almost doing it for myself just to see if I could do something other than that. And it was terrifying because you’re doing it in front of the world,” she admitted.
“I just fought with myself and who I was in this industry forever, and it was constantly about trying to prove that I was more than that person. But there is such a freedom in getting older because you just stop giving a crap,” Aniston added.