- Charlize Theron had an emotional reaction to watching Marvel's Black Panther, as it tapped into her anger and guilt from growing up in South Africa during the apartheid era.
- Theron didn't realize the extent of her anger and guilt until her late 20s and 30s, and it drove her to therapy.
- Theron's experience of guilt and shame led her to have a strong emotional connection to Black Panther, as it depicted strong black characters who are free and can determine their destiny, unlike the oppressive reality she grew up in.
Charlize Theron has very strong feelings about Marvel’s Black Panther.
RELATED: The School for Good and Evil 2: Will There Be A Netflix Sequel?
Charlize Theron is one of Hollywood’s biggest stars. She is talented, charming, and instantly likeable both on and off-screen. She has had a very successful career thus far and continues to endear audiences with her captivating persona. She’s also been quite open about her personal views and opinions, and her most recent comments have fans listening with open ears and hearts once again.
The star had an emotional reaction when asked about her experience watching Marvel’s 2018 blockbuster Black Panther. During an episode of Variety’s Actors on Actors series with Michael B. Jordon (one of the movie’s stars), the actress spoke about how the film tapped into her anger and guilt while growing up and beyond.
The South African-born Theron had a unique perspective to share: “I was born and raised in South Africa during the apartheid era. And I am very much a white African who lived and thrived under tremendously dark circumstances. And that really marks you as a person. Whether that’s your ideology or not, you’re living in it.”
Charlize was candid, saying, “When you’re young, you don’t know anything different. And then you grow up and see the rest of the world—you’re lucky enough, like I was lucky enough, to see the rest of the world—you know something is wrong but you don’t necessarily understand the broad-strokes of it. … I didn’t realize until my late 20s, 30s, how much anger I had inside me—and guilt—for just living my life circumstantially in a place that I didn’t necessarily choose.”
RELATED: The Black Panther Cartoon You Never Knew About
The South African Connection
It is Charlize’s experience of guilt and shame, which the actress openly shares in the interview, that essentially drove her to therapy. “For me to watch Black Panther as the person I am—and I know this sounds crazy to a lot of people—but it is a very emotional thing, it was a very emotional thing for me to watch it.” Theron continued by saying that she was 15 when the apartheid laws were disbanded in 1991, but the effects of having lived through and witnessing the racial injustices are clearly still present today.
Adopted Kids and Black Panther
Theron shared that watching the movie for the first time brought tears to her eyes, and even speaking about the experience had her tearing up when Jordan asked her about it. Charlize Theron has two adoptive daughters, both African-American girls, and she can’t wait for them to be old enough to watch Black Panther.
She said, “I had this weird reaction watching it when I said to myself, ‘I cannot wait for my girls to be big enough to share this with them.’ Because it’s so much more than just whether you’re from Africa or whether you’re African American or—it’s such a bigger thing than that, that movie broke so many glass ceilings across the board. Not just the fact that there are women in power and that they’re black, beautiful, strong African-American women, African women … and that my children are gonna benefit from that, but that I got something very cathartic out of that.”
RELATED: Black Panther Wakanda Forever Missed Its Redemption Story
Theron’s emotional reaction and the conversation that continues as a result of it demonstrate that Marvel’s Black Panther is not just another superhero movie but stands out as a culture-defining and barrier-breaking phenomenon. Theron’s emotional response to the film runs deep, and the actress had a visceral reaction to the world of Wakanda, its characters and its story.
The repressed anger and turmoil Theron felt being raised in an oppressive society found an outlet in Black Panther. The film triggered Theron’s cathartic experience, depicting strong black characters who are free and can determine their destiny, unlike the grim, repressive reality in which Theron grew up, where people of colour were oppressed and persecuted.
The weight of Theron’s guilt and shame was lifted when she experienced the powerful story of T’Challa and the socio-political drama enveloping the characters of Wakanda. Theron’s stirring words to Michael B Jordan are an insight into a complex individual who is honest and open about her feelings. Charlize should be commended for her sincerity and level of introspection of a time most shy away from and would rather avoid.
RELATED: 22 Most Popular And Best Black Actors Of All Time