Aug. 7th, 1975
Benoni, Gauteng, South Africa
Charlize Theron's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Charlize Theron (born August 7, 1975) is a South African and American actress, producer, director, and fashion model.
Born in Benoni, in the then-Transvaal Province of South Africa, the only child of Gerda (née Maritz) and Charles Theron (b. November 27, 1947). Second Boer War figure Danie Theron was her great-great-uncle. Her ancestry includes French, German, and Dutch; her French forebears were early Huguenot settlers in South Africa.
Theron grew up on her parents' farm in Benoni, near Johannesburg. On June 21, 1991, Theron's father, an alcoholic, physically attacked her mother and threatened both her mother and her while drunk; Theron's mother then shot and killed him. The shooting was legally adjudged to have been self-defense and her mother faced no charges.
She attended Putfontein Primary School (Laerskool Putfontein), a period she later characterised as not "fitting in". At 13, Theron was sent to boarding school and began her studies at the National School of the Arts in Johannesburg. Although Theron is fluent in English, her first language is Afrikaans.
Theron got an education as a ballet dancer and has danced both the "Swan Lake" and the "Nutcracker Suite". There wasn't much for a young actress or dancer to do in South Africa, so she soon traveled to Europe and United States of America, where she got job at the Joffrey Ballet in New York. She was also able to work as a photo model. However, an injured knee put a halt to her dancing career.
At the age of 19, her mother made her go to Los Angeles to try a career in the movie industry. She came to Los Angeles without knowing anyone in the city but after two weeks when she was standing in line on Hollywood Boulevard an agent gave her his card. After eight months in Los Angeles she got her first part. Since then, she has taken acting lessons and her career has skyrocketed.
She rose to fame in the late 1990s following roles in the films The Devil's Advocate (1997), Mighty Joe Young (1998), and The Cider House Rules (1999). Theron received critical acclaim for her portrayal of serial killer Aileen Wuornos in Monster (2003), for which she won the Silver Bear, Golden Globe Award, Screen Actors Guild Award, and Academy Award for Best Actress among several other accolades, becoming the first South African to win an Academy Award in a major acting category. In recent years, she has moved into the field of producing, both in television and film.
Theron received further Academy Award and Golden Globe Award nominations for her performance in North Country in 2005, and a Golden Globe Award nomination for her performance in Young Adult in 2011. In 2012, she appeared in Snow White & the Huntsman and Prometheus, both of which were box office successes. Theron became a U.S. citizen in 2007, while retaining her South African citizenship.
- She was the first person to sign on to be a presenter at the 77th Annual Academy Awards.
- Mother's name is Gerda.
- Trained as a ballet dancer at the Joffrey Ballet School in New York City, and performed in both "Swan Lake" and "The Nutcracker". Her dancing career ended after a knee injury.
- Named #4 in FHM's "100 Sexiest Women in the World 2005" special supplement (2005).
- Named #15 on the Maxim magazine Hot 100 of 2005 list.
- Ranked #11 on the Maxim magazine Hot 100 of 2008 list.
- Placed #1 on Beautiful People Internet Poll, narrowly beating 'Cameron Diaz' (qv) in #2 and 'Kate Beckinsale' (qv) in #3. The photo featured on the site was the famous 'Diving Board' photo.
- After winning her Oscar, she returned to great celebrations in her native South Africa, and she even met former South African President 'Nelson Mandela' (qv). When he praised her for putting their country on the map and gave her a hug, Theron broke into tears (she was guest of honor at the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg on March 11th 2004).