Jennifer Aniston Says Friends Reunion Brought Back Memories That ‘Sucked’

The actress behind Rachel Green spoke in a candid interview about everything from "nasty" tabloids and constantly being painted as a "damsel in distress."

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Jennifer Aniston Says Friends Reunion Brought Back Memories That ‘Sucked’
Photo:Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic (Getty Images)

As it turns out, mining your trauma for the fans is not so great! Jennifer Aniston is speaking publicly about the emotional tumult she experienced in the wake of the Friends reunion on HBO Max that dropped earlier this year.

In an interview published on Wednesday in The Hollywood Reporter, Aniston admitted that she and her former NBC co-stars “were just so naive walking into it, thinking, ‘How fun is this going to be? They’re putting the sets back together, exactly as they were.’” But recreating sets that existed during a really shitty point in your life? Sort of like opening a diary entry and reliving all the emotions you had the last time you were there.

Aniston told THR:

Then you get there and it’s like, “Oh right, I hadn’t thought about what was going on the last time I was actually here.” And it just took me by surprise because it was like, “Hi, past, remember me? Remember how that sucked? You thought everything was in front of you and life was going to be just gorgeous and then you went through maybe the hardest time in your life?” It was all very jarring and, of course, you’ve got cameras everywhere and I’m already a little emotionally accessible, I guess you could say, so I had to walk out at certain points. I don’t know how they cut around it.

If you were conscious in 2004, when the Friends series finale first aired, you’ll remember that it was a whirlwind of a time for Aniston in the press. In mid-2004, her then-husband Brad Pitt had begun filming Mr. & Mrs. Smith with Angelina Jolie. As they were very hot people both in their prime, it wasn’t shocking that romantic rumors about them ignited almost immediately; more shocking was when those rumors turned out to be true. Pitt and Aniston announced they were splitting in January 2005, with Aniston filing for divorce in March. Just a month later, Pitt was spotted in Kenya on vacation with Jolie.

Elsewhere in the interview with THR, Aniston lambasted the “really hurtful and just nasty” tabloids for perpetuating narratives like “the whole ‘Oh, she chose career over kids’ assumption,” as no one had any “clue what’s going with me personally, medically, why I can’t…can I have kids?” She also shared how she’s tired of being painted as “the girl next door, the damsel in distress, the brokenhearted.”

“At a certain point, it was like, ‘Can’t we do something else? Am I just on this part of the cereal aisle?” she said. “Like, will I ever get to be a bountiful Kashi or some sort of oatmeal, or am I going to be Fruit Loops forever?’”

Much like Cameron Diaz can never be Jell-o, we’re pretty sure on at least one thing, Jen: You’re not a Fruit Loop.

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