EXCLUSIVE: Why Jennifer Aniston Feels Empathy for Her Character in 'Cake'

by Rosalyn Oshmyansky 4:50 AM PST, December 08, 2014
Playing EXCLUSIVE: Why Jennifer Aniston Feels Empathy for Her Character in 'Cake'

Hollywood's A-listers Jennifer Aniston, Emily Blunt, Jessica Chastain, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Shailene Woodley got together for an open conversation about acting.

Co-produced by EPIX and the Los Angeles Times, these stars are part of a Hollywood Sessions series in which candid conversations take place about their potential award-winning roles. ETonline has your exclusive first look at Aniston talking about her latest role in Cake.

The Horrible Bosses 2 star says she is "always trying to find the great small roles," admitting, "I've been doing fart jokes for a long time, which I love immensely." Now, she's found a "little labor of love" with her part in Cake.

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In Cake, Aniston, 45, plays Claire Simmons, a woman who becomes fascinated by the suicide of another woman (Anna Kendrick) in her chronic pain support group. While developing a relationship with the woman's widower (Sam Worthington), Claire must deal with her own personal tragedy.

WATCH: Jennifer Aniston in the Official Trailer for 'Cake'

Cake premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and critics praised Aniston's role as being Oscar-worthy.

During Hollywood Sessions, Aniston speaks about how she was able to relate to the character, "I felt a lot of empathy for her struggle, and I think she is beautiful. Her problems and her choices and her journey is beautiful." She adds, "We feel empathy for people going through pain."

In agreement with her, Blunt, says, "Acting is the ultimate expression of empathy."

And it's not always the good characters that these ladies empathize with when they take on these roles. "The monsters are usually the people I have the most empathy for because they're the ones that are hurt the most," Chastain admits. "There's a reason that they're monsters."

The first episode of the Hollywood Sessions series premieres on EPIX on Dec. 8 at 8 p.m. ET.