Jennifer Aniston will receive the prestigious Sherry Lansing Leadership Award at The Hollywood Reporter’s annual Women in Entertainment breakfast gala, which will take place Dec. 8 in Los Angeles.
Steve Carell, Aniston’s co-star on The Morning Show, will present her with the award, which recognizes trailblazers and philanthropists in entertainment and media. Previous recipients have included Oprah Winfrey, Shonda Rhimes, Meryl Streep, Reese Witherspoon, Viola Davis, Barbra Streisand, Jodie Foster and Barbara Walters.
Aniston will be honored alongside some of Hollywood’s most influential women at the invite-only WIE gala, which is attended by 600 industry leaders and VIPs. The event coincides with the publication of THR’s annual Power 100 list of the top hundred women in film and television.
“Jennifer has excelled across television, film and production; she is a dynamic leader within the entertainment industry and beyond. In addition to her many career accomplishments, she has also shown her generosity with her philanthropic efforts,” said Nekesa Mumbi Moody, editorial director of The Hollywood Reporter. “This year, we are thrilled to honor such an amazing woman.”
The Lansing Award was named in honor of Sherry Lansing, the first woman ever to run a studio. A former president of 20th Century Fox and chairman/CEO of Paramount Pictures, Lansing also produced such classic films as Fatal Attraction. Since leaving Paramount in 2005, Lansing (who co-founded Stand Up to Cancer) has served as chairman of the Board of Regents of the University of California and as head of her own nonprofit, the Sherry Lansing Foundation.
“I have been Jennifer’s biggest fan since I first saw and fell in love with her on Friends,” Lansing said. “Year after year, I have watched her become an enormous force in the industry. She brings her extraordinary talent and unique vitality to every project. Even more important, her tireless support of philanthropic causes such as Stand Up to Cancer, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and countless others inspires us all to give back.”
Aniston — an Emmy, Golden Globe and SAG Award winner — received the GLAAD Vanguard Award in 2007 for her outstanding support of the LGBTQ community. She has also contributed multiple hours and financial aid to such organizations as Americares, Doctors Without Borders, Feeding America, Project ALS, Best Friends Animal Society and the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, among others.
A highlight of the breakfast will be the presence of some 30 high school juniors and seniors selected to take part in the celebrated Women in Entertainment Mentorship Program, a joint venture between THR and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles. The students will be presented with almost $1 million in university scholarships.
Now in its 13th year, the Mentorship Program pairs the best and brightest high school girls from disadvantaged communities in the Los Angeles area with top-level executives, lawyers and agents. Past mentors have included Amazon Studios head Jennifer Salke, Imax Entertainment president Megan Colligan, Netflix head of global TV Bela Bajaria and Walt Disney Television Entertainment chairman Dana Walden.
Women in Entertainment is presented by Lifetime and sponsored by Cadillac, FIJI Water, SAG-AFTRA and eOne, in partnership with Chapman University and Loyola Marymount University.