Charlize Theron is the first South African to win an Oscar for Best Actress. She was born in 1975 and grew up on a farm outside South Africa.
Despite the rural setting, Charlize’s resourceful mother fostered her artistic leanings. Charlize showed an aptitude for dance and was trained as a classical ballet dancer.
her parents had a conflictual relationship. Her father is reported to have struggled with alcoholism. When Charlize was 15 years old, her mother killed her father after he threatened their lives during a drunken rage.
The act was legally adjudged to have been self-defence and no charges were brought against her mother. Shortly after her father’s death, Charlize won the International New Model Today competition and moved to Italy.
Two years later, she relocated to New York and joined the Joffrey Ballet School. Her dance career was ended due to a severe knee injury and Charlize decided to pursue an acting career instead.
After appearing in various films, Charlize won the Oscar for Best Actress in 2004. Film critics described her portrayal of serial killer in Monster as one of the greatest performances in the history of the cinema.
In 2013 Charlize was awarded for her commitment to improving the lives of African youth with HIV and AIDS. She continues to promote women’s rights and frequently acts as an unofficial, but effective ambassador for South Africa.