Jennifer Aniston won the People’s Icon Award at the 2019 People’s Choice Awards, and she paid homage to her Friends in her speech. The 50-year-old actress referenced her role as Rachel Green — and her famous 1990s haircut — in her speech as she thanked fans for voting for her to win the coveted award.
Aniston, who wore a stunning black strapless dress and was introduced on stage by her longtime friend and co-star Adam Sandler, joked that as actors they “do this for the money.” But then she got serious as she thanked fans for their support during her long career, which skyrocketed when she starred as Rachel on Friends from 1994 to 2004.
The Morning Show star then explained that she only deserves “icon” status due to her role as Rachel on Friends.
“If I have any claim to this word ‘icon,’ it’s only because I was able to be on an iconic show, with an iconic cast, and an iconic haircut,” the actress said.
Aniston called Friends “the gift of a lifetime” and admitted she would not be accepting an Icon award if it weren’t for the show and her five co-stars. Aniston starred on Friends with real-life pals Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, David Schwimmer, Matt LeBlanc, and Matthew Perry.
On Instagram, fans commented on a clip of Aniston’s speech and her well-deserved win.
“She will always be the greatest icon of all, she is the best person in the world and I love her with all my heart!!” one fan wrote.
“She slayed,” another added of Aniston. “She is a legend, people will look back at her in the next 30 years and be like WOW.”
Others noted that Friends is timeless more than 25 years after it debuted on NBC.
Of course, fans were thrilled that Aniston gave a shout-out to her Friends past. The star, who joined Instagram last month, will always be remembered for her breakthrough role as Rachel on the ensemble sitcom — and for her very “iconic” haircut. Aniston made hair history in the mid-1990s when her blond-streaked shaggy bob known as “The Rachel” became a popular request at hair salons.
Although she now recalls The Rachel as an “iconic hairstyle,” Aniston didn’t always appreciate it. In 2011, Aniston spoke to Allure about the layered cut created by her longtime hairstylist Chris McMillan in 1995.
“I love Chris, and he’s the bane of my existence at the same time because he started that damn Rachel, which was not my best look, How do I say this? I think it was the ugliest haircut I’ve ever seen,” she said.
Aniston (and her haircut) weren’t the only Icon winners at the 2019 People’s Choice Awards. While she won the coveted People’s Icon title, Gwen Stefani won the Fashion Icon award and Pink won People’s Champion of 2019.