With a Best Actress Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Oscar for her role in the biopic Monster (portraying serial killer Aileen Wuornos in 2003) in which she was forced to flex her acting muscles and completely alter her appearance, Charlize Theron is clearly one of the most talented and beautiful actresses of her generation
What is your favourite book?
The Road, by Cormac McCarthy – it changed my life.
Why should you listen to her?
Born in South Africa, Charlize Theron was a ballerina and model before getting attention as an actress in the Tom Hanks film That Thing You Do (1996) and the Woody Allen film Celebrity (1998). She played a New England ingenue in the 1999 art house hit The Cider House Rules, and by the year 2000 she was starring in big budget pictures like Reindeer Games (with Ben Affleck) and Robert Redford's The Legend of Bagger Vance (alongside stars Matt Damon and Will Smith). What made her a star was her transformation from offscreen beauty to onscreen nightmare as serial killer Aileen Wuornos in Monster (2003, co-starring Christina Ricci). She won an Oscar for best actress and was launched into the top tier of leading ladies. She won another Oscar nomination for North Country (2005), but the highly-anticipated Aeon Flux (2005) was raspberried by the critics and spurned by moviegoers. Her other films include The Italian Job (2003, starring Mark Wahlberg), the HBO movie The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004, she plays Britt Ekland) and the 2007 Paul Haggis film In the Valley of Elah (starring Tommy Lee Jones).