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Jennifer Aniston is no stranger to her “fair share of sexism in the media,” as she candidly discusses in a September cover story for InStyle that covers topics ranging from the #MeToo movement to her being a frequent tabloid target to Friends.
In the interview — where pal Molly McNearney, who is married to Jimmy Kimmel, is asking the questions — the actress says the #MeToo movement has been “long overdue” and recalls how she has dealt with “sloppy moves” made by men in Hollywood.
“I’ve definitely had some sloppy moves made on me by other actors and I handled it by walking away,” the actress shares. Despite fending off uncomfortable passes, however, she says she has never had anyone in a position of power make her “feel uncomfortable” or use “leverage” over her. “In my personal experience, I’ve been treated worse verbally and energetically by some women in this industry,” Aniston explains.
Touching on the challenges she’s faced throughout her career, the movie star again opens up about the frequent speculation about her dating life, her decision to not have children at this point in her life and whether her “heartbreak” over her divorce from her second husband, Justin Theroux, was a result of her being “committed to her career.”
“It’s pretty crazy. The misconceptions are ‘Jen can’t keep a man’ and ‘Jen refuses to have a baby because she’s selfish and committed to her career.’ Or that I’m sad and heartbroken,” she says. “First, with all due respect, I’m not heartbroken. And second, those are reckless assumptions. No one knows what’s going on behind closed doors. No one considers how sensitive that might be for my partner and me.”
Adding, “They don’t know what I’ve been through medically or emotionally. Maybe my purpose on this planet isn’t to procreate. Maybe I have other things I’m supposed to do?”
Though she admits that she struggles with remaining “poised and balanced” at times amid false reports, Aniston argues that, for the most part, she finds the headlines written about her to be “more and more absurd.”
“I guess they’re feeding into some sort of need the public has, but I focus on my work, my friends, my animals, and how we can make the world a better place. That other stuff is junk food that needs to go back in its drawer,” she says.
Aniston also attests that the false headlines she has faced throughout her career are telling of the way women are treated in the industry. “Women are picked apart and pitted against one another based on looks and clothing and superficial stuff. When a couple breaks up in Hollywood, it’s the woman who is scorned. The woman is left sad and alone. She’s the failure. F that. When was the last time you read about a divorced, childless man referred to as a spinster?”
Though she muses about leaving Hollywood behind and moving to Switzerland, Aniston says her current focus is to “make better choices” in regards to her career. “I went through a period of saying yes to projects that I shouldn’t have, but I felt like, ‘How dare I say no?’ Now I’m trying to get better at saying no and to be a part of projects that actually, really matter a la [new projects] Dumplin’ or The Goree Girls or this other film we’re working on called The Fixer, about an amazing crisis manager named Denise White.”
One of the projects Aniston is also not ruling out? The idea of a Friends reboot.
Despite Friends co-creators David Crane and Marta Kauffman previously shooting down rumors of a Friends reunion ever happening, Aniston had opened the door once again during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show earlier this year when she said that “anything is a possibility.”
Now, the cover star elaborates further to her friend, telling McNearney that a Friends revival is something she will “fantasize” about with former co-stars Lisa Kudrow and Courteney Cox.
“It really was the greatest job I ever had,” she says. “I don’t know what it would look like today, but you never know. So many shows are being successfully rebooted. I know Matt LeBlanc doesn’t want to be asked that question anymore. But maybe we could talk him into it. Or we just give it some time and then Lisa, Courteney and I could reboot The Golden Girls and spend our last years together on wicker furniture.”
Read the full interview, here.
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