Charlize Theron opened up about a #MeToo moment early in her career—and how she confronted the man after she got famous
In the year and a half since the #MeToo movement began, countless survivors of sexual harassment and assault have come forward with their stories. Now, Charlize Theron has shared that she was also sexually harassed—and it happened during her first-ever audition.
On the April 29th episode of Sirius XM’s The Howard Stern Show, the actress said that when she was about 19, she was interested in transitioning from modeling to acting, and her manager sent her to audition with a high-profile producer (“He was a very big deal and is still a big deal” she said). The man apparently asked her to come to his house at 9 p.m. on a Saturday. Theron said that when she arrived, he answered the door in his pajamas.
Theron recalled that the producer sat much too close to her and was drinking alcohol. He also asked her personal questions and didn’t have her read the lines she’d brought. The actress said she decided to leave when he put his hand on her knee.
"It’s crazy and girls talk about this where you just go blank," she said. "Like you don’t know what to do, but I left. I don’t even know how I got out of the house, but I left."
Theron noted that at the time, she was mad at herself for not speaking up in the moment.
"I was so angry at myself that I didn't say something," she remembered. "I was like, 'I'm not that kind of girl. Why did I not tell him to go f*ck himself?" Like it made me so angry."
Theron said she met with the producer again eight years later when she was much more established in her career. She said she went to see him “purely just to have my moment.” However, when she told him what happened, he “had no recollection of it.”
"Which, by the way, shows you how many women he did it to," Stern pointed out. "If he doesn't even remember, that's not a one-off."
We’re glad Theron is using her platform to talk about this and remind others that “freezing up” in a stressful and scary moment is 100% normal and understandable—many, many others have experienced the exact same thing. As always, we stand with survivors. You are not alone.