Charlize Theron has sparked outrage after she made a comment that compared media intrusion to rape.
During an interview with Sky News, in which she was promoting her new film, A Million Ways to Die in the West, the reporter brought up how a quick Google search would result in something like “Charlize Theron sexy in plunging mini dress” and “Charlize Theron reveals something about her son.”
Charlize told Sky News that “every aspect” of her life has become something to use for a style of journalism that is based “in a dark room.” But she personally doesn’t look up her own name to see what has been published.
“I don’t [Google myself], so that’s my saving grace,” Theron said. “I think it’s when you start living in that world and start doing that, you start, I guess, feeling raped.”
When asked by the reporter if the intrusion into her life felt “that strong,” Charlize replied: “Well, when it comes to your son and your private life. Maybe that’s just me.”
“Some people might relish in all that stuff, but there are certain things in my life that, I think, are very sacred, and I am very protective over them,” Charlize added.
Since she is a Hollywood actress, Charlize Theron is constantly hounded by press for photographs or interviews, and there will be stories about her life surfacing on the internet. But as long as she doesn’t see it herself, she’s okay.
“I don’t always win that war, but as long as I don’t have to see that stuff or read that stuff or hear that stuff, then I can live with my head in a clear space, which is probably a lot healthier than living in that dark room,” Theron said.
Charlize Theron has appeared in anti-rape advertisements in the past, one of which outlined the statistics in South Africa. She also won an Oscar for her work in Monster, in which she portrayed real-life rape victim and serial killer Aileen Wuornos. According to International Business Times, Theron’s mother, Gerda, was a victim of sexual abuse herself, and, in 1991, Gerda killed Theron’s father in self-defense.
Katie Russell, a spokesperson for Rape Crisis England and Wales, said the real-life experience of sexual assault is “devastating” and there never is an “appropriate” time to use rape as a “metaphor for something else.”
Russell added that it’s “disappointing” when a well-known figure “uses that language.”
“It’s particularly disappointing in this case because Charlize Theron has campaigned against sexual violence before,” she said. “She doesn’t really have an excuse and it will upset people who have survived attacks.”
Many have already taken to Twitter to express their outrage over Theron’s comments.
Charlize Theron making comments about her personal life and sometimes she does not think before she talks.
— jarreaumanconcierge (@jarreauman) May 31, 2014
Tbh I thought Charlize Theron would have been more sensitive about issues such as rape considering her violent upbringing. Disappointing.
— zora (@_madamedeficit) May 31, 2014
I can’t decide who I’m more repulsed by: Charlize Theron, Scarlett Johansson, or Gwyneth Paltrow
— Aneela (@_Anneela_) May 31, 2014
Jill Saward, a victim of sexual violence, told Sky News that Charlize Theron should apologize for her comments.
“I was really shocked and disgusted by what she’d said,” Saward said. “Being in the situation she’d been in, campaigning for rape, she definitely ought to know better.”
Saward added that constant press coverage “can be very damaging,” but that and sexual violence are not the same.
“It can be very difficult, but it is absolutely nothing in comparison,” she said.
[Image via NewsRevealer]