Charlize Theron Opens Up About Witnessing Mom Shoot And Kill Her Dad When She Was 15

In a New York Times profile published on Tuesday, actress Charlize Theron spoke about when her mother killed her father in self-defense.

When Theron was 15 and living in her native South Africa, her abusive, alcoholic father threatened Theron and her mother with a gun. He began shooting, and her mom, Gerda Jacoba Aletta Maritz, grabbed her own handgun and shot back. Theron’s father died and his brother was wounded. Officials decided the killing was justified.

“I survived that, and I’m proud of that. I’ve worked hard for that, too,” Theron told The New York Times. “And I am not scared of that. I am not fearful of the darkness. If anything, I am intrigued by it, because I think it explains human nature and people better.” 

She said the aftermath was even worse than the shooting itself. “That was my entire childhood. My trauma was all of that.” 

Theron has played several

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