The Jennifer Aniston Movie Scene That Got Cut For Going Way Too Far
Jennifer Aniston has undoubtedly had one of the most enviable careers in Hollywood. The actress rose to the ranks of America’s Sweetheart virtually overnight after scoring the role of Rachel Green on one of the most beloved sitcoms in television history, and rode that wave to staggering celebrity over the course of Friends‘ decade-long run on NBC. Aniston has spent much of her post-Friends career trying to prove to the Hollywood establishment she’s far more than just the sum of Friends‘ 235 episodes. And she’s experienced some legit success in that endeavor.
Since Friends wrapped in 2004, Aniston has delivered a string of soul-stirring performances in indie hits like The Good Girl (opposite Jake Gyllenhaal), Friends with Money (starring Frances McDormand and Catherine Keener), and Cake (which earned her a Best Actress Golden Globe nomination). She’s also fronted a couple of blockbuster rom-coms in 2004’s Along Came Polly and 2006’s The Break-Up, and recently charmed audiences in Netflix’s coming-of-age comedy Dumplin’.
Along the way, the actress shocked even her biggest fans when she went full raunch for 2011’s black comedy film Horrible Bosses. Aniston appeared alongside Jason Bateman, Jason Sudekis, Jamie Foxx, Charlie Day, Colin Farrell, and more as Dr. Julia Harris — the sexually aggressive boss who tormented Day’s dental assistant character Dale Arbus with a relentless wave of inappropriate actions and comments. Certainly, Aniston’s performance as Julia was a standout.
So good was Aniston in the role that she returned for the film’s unexpected sequel, Horrible Bosses 2. But, as it happens, audiences were supposed to see a bit more of Aniston in the film. One scene from Horrible Bosses 2 was so provocative that it was ultimately removed from the film altogether.
It’s best that the inappropriate Horrible Bosses 2 scene was cut
While promoting Horrible Bosses 2 on Conan O’Brien’s late-night talk show in 2014, Aniston revealed the details of the cut scene. Per Aniston’s candid (and hilariously fumbling) explanation, the biggest problem with the scrapped scene was that Day’s character wasn’t conscious while her character was, ahem, getting frisky with him.
If you’ll recall, Dale is shot near the end of Horrible Bosses 2 and ends up in a days-long coma. Dale wakes to find that he and his compatriots, Bateman’s Nick Hendricks and Sudeikis’ Kurt Buckman, have again narrowly escaped jail time. He also learns that Julia had been lurking about during his time in hospital, and she eventually admits to taking advantage of him while he was comatose. Julia’s admission made the final cut of Horrible Bosses 2, but scene depicting the act didn’t — though we now know that it was actually filmed.
While describing the scene to O’Brien, Aniston made it pretty clear that the non-consensual nature of the act is what led to the scene being left on cutting room floor. And that’s for the best. Even if the world in 2014 may have touch more forgiving of such a scene, it’s still awfully hard to imagine anyone laughing at such vile behavior then or now. Including the scene in Horrible Bosses 2 may also have tainted Aniston’s screen legacy as well — even if it’s very much in the unseemly spirit of the film from which it was cut.
Jennifer Aniston probably won’t film many scenes that go too far in the future
Aniston is anything but a one-trick actress — as evidenced by her keen ability to play everything from the initially naïve and spoiled Rachel Green on Friends to a slew of different rom-com leads to the nuanced Sarah “Rose” O’Reilly in We’re the Millers to the former beauty queen Rosie Dickson in Dumplin’ to, of course, Dr. Julia Harris in the Horrible Bosses movies. She’s been in showbiz for 30 years now (even longer if you count her uncredited role as a dancer in McDonald’s in 1988’s Mac and Me), and she has yet to box herself into being typecast to one particular kind of role.
This means that Aniston may not circle back to portraying an over-the-top, capital-R raunchy character in the future — which means that there probably won’t be scenes in which Aniston’s character goes way too far. It seems that experience was an isolated one, reserved for the Horrible Bosses flicks. Never say never, of course, but it seems that Aniston is focusing her time and creative effort on projects that truly speak to her.
Since 2019, Aniston has starred on and executive produced the Apple TV+ series The Morning Show. The series, created by Jay Carson and inspired by Top of the Morning: Inside the Cutthroat World of Morning TV by Brian Stelter, features Aniston as Alex Levy, the co-host of the Manhatted-based breakfast news program The Morning Show, and Reese Witherspoon as Bradley Jackson, a former field reporter who becomes Alex’s co-host.
Many critics have praised Aniston’s performance in particular, noting that she’s “fantastic” in her role as Alex Levy. Wrote Bethonie Butler for The Washington Post , “After decades in an industry known for limiting opportunities for women, especially as they age, Aniston undoubtedly knows how it feels to be underestimated. But refreshingly, she embraces all of her roles — even the one that threatened to render her typecast per an all-too-familiar Hollywood tradition. [. ] Her role on The Morning Show is electrifying.”
It’s a far cry from Dr. Julia Harris — and it’s served Aniston incredibly well.