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11/18/2014 07:15 pm ET Updated Nov 18, 2014

The Tragedy That Made 'Mom' Personal For Allison Janney

Allison Janney won an Emmy for her hilarious work on "Mom," a sitcom that finds the humor in recovering from addiction, but it was a dark personal tragedy that made her take the role.

Janney opened up to HuffPost Live's Ricky Camilleri on Tuesday about how her brother's death -- which she has called "the most traumatic event of my life” -- helped her find the importance of "Mom."

"I lost my brother to addiction and other things. It was terrible, and I think that's why when this show came into my lap and I saw it was about people in recovery and addiction, I was like, 'I'm doing it. I just want to do it. I just want to do it for him,'" she said. "I love it when people come up to me and say, 'I've been in recovery for four years or 25 years, and I thank God this show is on TV.'"

Janney said she hopes "Mom" will destigmatize the recovery experience and show that there is life after addiction.

"It's definitely scary because you never know -- it's a day by day thing, and with my brother, he didn't make it. And I want to show two women [in 'Mom'] who are survivors, who are going to make it," she said.

Catch the full HuffPost Live conversation with Allison Janney here.

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