Why 2011 Was Jennifer Aniston's Best Year Ever!

Celebrity News Dec. 16, 2011 AT 10:02AM
Why 2011 Was Jennifer Aniston's Best Year Ever!

After years of heartache and series of box office bombs, Jennifer Aniston finally got her groove back.

The 42-year-old actress dated a handful of men following her 2005 split with Brad Pitt, but it wasn't until she began romancing her Wanderlust costar Justin Theroux, 40, that she really found love again.

PHOTOS: JENNIFER ANISTON'S BEST YEAR EVER

"Jen hasn't felt this way about anyone since Brad," an insider told Us Weekly in August. Added another pal: "They are moving quickly, but they know the feelings they have about [each other] are different from past romances."

Aniston's new romance wasn't the only cause for celebration in 2011. In addition to starring in two hit movies (Just Go With It and Horrible Bosses), the actress expanded her social circle. She grew closer to Reese Witherspoon (who played her sister Jill on Friends) and vacationed with E!'s Chelsea Handler.

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"Jennifer Aniston makes me laugh," Handler, 36, has raved. "She's irreverent and hilarious, and she sends me really, really funny e-mails."

Aniston surrounded herself with more strong women when she got behind the lens as part of Lifetime's Five anthology. Joined by Demi Moore, Alicia Keys, Penelope Spheeris and Patty Jenkins, first-time director Aniston helped viewers empathize with five women's battle with breast cancer.

VIDEO: Ouch! Jennifer Aniston kicks a Chelsea Lately staffer in the crotch

Aniston's talents were recognized in July when she received the ultimate honor: taking part in the iconic hand and footprint ceremony at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood.

"Man, I have to tell you, I never thought in my wildest dreams that I'd be sticking my body in cement for a good reason," Aniston joked.

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Making the event more special? Theroux and Handler joined Aniston for the momentous occasion.

For more on Jennifer Aniston's landmark year -- including her unforgettable hair makeover, her renovated NYC apartment, her first fragrance launch, and much more -- click through the Jennifer Aniston's Best Year Ever gallery now!

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