South African actress Charlize Theron worked her way up through Hollywood from humble beginnings, appearing in That Thing You Do! in 1996 before going on to snag an Oscar for her role in 2003’s Monster, and then starring in last year’s Oscar-dominating Mad Max: Fury Road.
But beautiful actresses often have it the hardest in Hollywood, the 40-year-old star told British GQ for their May cover issue.
“Jobs with real gravitas go to people that are physically right for them and that’s the end of the story,” Theron told the magazine.
“How many roles are out there for the gorgeous, f—king, gown-wearing eight-foot model?” she added. “When meaty roles come through, I’ve been in the room and pretty people get turned away first.”
As the New York Daily News notes, Theron isn’t the only actress who has said it can be tough to land a role due to being “too beautiful.” Keira Knightley, Jessica Biel and Scarlett Johansson have all complained at various times about their beauty getting in the way of securing film roles.
“It pisses me [off] when people f—king complain that I’m too beautiful to get a part,” Transformers actress Megan Fox has said in the past. “That’s bulls—t. You wouldn’t be working if you weren’t attractive. Hollywood is the most superficial thing you could possibly be a part of. And if I weren’t attractive I wouldn’t be working at all.”
In her interview with GQ, Theron also weighed in on what she called society’s “unrealistic” beauty standards for women, while men, she said, age more gracefully.
“We live in a society where women wilt and men age like fine wine. And, for a long time, women accepted it,” she said. “We were waiting for society to change, but now we’re taking leadership. It would be a lie to say there is less worry for women as they get older than there is for men… It feels there’s this unrealistic standard of what a woman is supposed to look like when she’s over 40.”
Theron isn’t letting her beauty get in the way of her career: she can be seen starring in The Huntsman: Winter’s War opposite Chris Hemsworth and Emily Blunt, and in the Sean Penn-directed The Last Face later this year. She’s also rumored to have a role in Fast 8, the latest entry in the Fast and Furious franchise, tentatively due out next year.
Follow Daniel Nussbaum on Twitter: @dznussbaum