It's not often that traffic grinds to a complete standstill in downtown NYC during the early evening. That's exactly what happened, however, when Jennifer Aniston took to the red (er, blue) carpet at last night's premiere of the Lifetimeoriginal short film series Five. While Aniston's boyfriend Justin Theroux was able to sneak around the press line without so much as a flashbulb, his lady's simultaneous arrival prompted bystanders to run across open lanes of traffic and cars to slam on their brakes.
Five may examine the impact of breast cancer in the lives of everyday women, but it boasts A-listers like Demi Moore, Alicia Keys, and, yes, Jennifer Aniston as directors. Executive producer Aniston's short stars the luminous Patricia Clarkson as a strong-willed survivor. "It's important to keep this subject at the forefront of our community," said Clarkson, who brought her mother along as her date for the evening. "This disease is at epidemic proportions—there's not a single person here who hasn't been touched by it in some way." She had only the highest praise for her director, too. "I loved working with Jennifer—every day was just an absolute triumph."
Big Love's Jeanne Tripplehorn stars as an oncologist in the film series, and explained that Five was a dramatic departure from her usual roles. "When I started acting, I always took these masculine blockbuster movies—but I always wanted to work with women. So to finally have a female-centric set was a dream come true. I think people like to say that when women group together, they become very competitive...but when you're in the shadow of breast cancer, you really do have to band together. Everybody had a great sense of humor and focus. And while Jennifer and Demi had both directed shorts before, this was just on another scale completely." And how did Aniston take to the director's chair, I asked? "I mean—she's Jennifer!" Tripplehorn laughed. "This is a serious subject, and she approached it with real sensitivity. She had complete control of the set, and as a director, that's something that has to be first and foremost. I've known Jen for a long time—going on about 20 years now! She's a real girl's girl, and she surrounds herself with such good, strong women."
And with surprise RSVPs including Ellen Barkin and Gloria Estefan, it certainly was a night for the girls. Lifetime's Five premieres on October 10th at 9 pm EST, so be sure to tune in!