Interview: Jennifer Aniston continues to shed good-girl image
Jennifer Aniston fans who were shocked to see her good-girl image fritter away, quite hilariously, as the sex-addict dentist in “Horrible Bosses” and then take it another step further as a stripper in “We’re the Millers” should watch out! She’s gone down the road of no return in a reprisal of always-horny dentist Julia Harris in “Horrible Bosses 2.” And this time around, she plays it funnier, slinkier, more outrageous and just a tad sluttier.
The film brings back the three goofballs and would-be killers played by Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis and Charlie Day (the object of Dr. Harris’ desires in the first one), who are now involved in an inept kidnapping plot. Things quickly get out of control when they raid her office, which doubles as a meeting place for her sex-addicts therapy group. Aniston spoke about the role recently in Los Angeles.
Q. Julia has an extremely foul mouth in the film. Did you find it funny when you were saying those things or was it a little embarrassing?
A. I find it extremely entertaining the way she speaks; I don’t think she feels that she’s saying anything inappropriate. For her, it’s describing, say, the ingredients to a nice soufflé or what are we going to be doing this weekend.
Q. The scene at the sex addiction meeting, when you were goading on Jason Bateman’s character to talk about his sexual experiences, has a very real, kind of adlibbed feel to it. Was any of it scripted?
A. The structure of it was there. But as we were doing the volley back and forth of what my demands were for him to admit to the group, there were different little variations from take to take.
Q. Do you think Julia was at the group because she really wanted help or because she was looking for new conquests with other addicts?
A. I think her intention maybe was to seek help, but what she ultimately found out was this was just like chum for her. (laughs) You know, she probably lost all of her patients because she had “done” all of them. So maybe this was just another wonderful innocent way to find more prey.
Q. Did you think much about this character after you played her the first time? And what did you do to kind of up the ante for the sequel?
A. The writers called just to ask how far should we go with Julia. I said go as far as you can, as long as it’s in the realm of not insulting or offending too many people. I think it rose itself to the occasion. The dialogue was great, and I think the situation where they meet her in the sex group lent itself to great humor. I was just psyched! And, yes, I thought about her throughout all the films I’ve done since then (laughs). She’s a hard one to let go of. I didn’t get enough of her. It was too quick. It was just like a little In-N-Out Burger, and then she was done.
Q. You recently finished a dramatic role in “Cake,” which is coming out next year. Was there a big difference for you between playing drama and comedy?
A. I love doing both. I think one accesses one part of my brain and the other accesses the other. But any time I approach any character — comedy or drama — it’s grounded in reality, coming from the truth. There’s comedy in drama, and there’s drama in comedy. I don’t find the two exclusive from one another.
Ed Symkus writes about movies for More Content Now.