Charlize Theron Draws From Childhood Trauma To Relate To ‘Dark Places’ Role

Charlize Theron relates to her newest character on a very personal level. She is drawing inspiration from a painfully dark time in her own life for her upcoming film, Dark Places.

According to In Touch Weekly, Theron discussed the similarities between her own traumatic experience early in life and that of her character during a French news interview.

“There’s definitely an acknowledgement on my part that I had an experience of, a very traumatic experience, an event, in my life and somehow it’s formed me.”

As reported by Inquisitr, she plays the role of Libby Day, who witnessed the horrific murder of her mother and sisters by cult members when she was just 8-years-old. She later has to testify about the brutality in court.

When the Mad Max actress was 15-years-old, she watched her mother shoot and kill her father in self-defense. While under the influence of alcohol, he attacked his daughter and wife. When he threatened them with a gun, her mother shot and killed him. The killing was ruled to be self-defense and no charges were filed.

“It really is examining what a trauma like that would do to a child, especially when she’s expected to speak about it. And that’s definitely something that I can relate to, that’s definitely something that I’ve experienced in my life.”

The South African star has rarely talked about the event since first revealing it in a 2004 Diane Sawyer interview. According to, she shared her wish that people would focus on something other than the shooting.

“I try to just live my life in as good and authentic a way as possible. And I just wish people would write about that and the matter-of-fact way that that is, rather than: ‘On a summer’s day, her mother shot her father.’ “

The 39-year-old is focusing on much more positive things in her life now — like her “hot” man, Sean Penn. The pair were friends for 20 years before their romance blossomed last year. Fox News stated the blonde beauty was not shy during an Esquire interview regarding her feelings for her 54-year-old fiancé.

“I’m a very, very, very lucky girl. Very lucky. He’s hot. He is hot. How do you say that in an interview? You’re a 40-year-old woman sounding like a 16-year-old. There’s something beautiful about that, but you lack the articulation of really saying what it’s like when somebody walks into your life and makes you see something that you really never thought you’d be able to see. If somebody had said to me, ‘This is what it will be,’ I would’ve said, ‘F**k off.’ As you can see, it makes me smile.”

Charlize Theron has never been married. Penn has been married twice — to Madonna and actress Robin Wright. However, he proclaimed his true love for Theron in an interview early this year, saying he would consider a marriage to her “a first marriage on its own terms.”

[Image by Ian Gavan/Getty Images]