Charlize Theron Had To Endure Six More Weeks Of Training Than Male Co-Stars For ‘The Italian Job’

Charlize Theron attends the EE British Academy Film Awards 2020 After Party
Tristan Fewings / Getty Images

Charlize Theron is being honored at San Diego Comic-Con this year with a panel dedicated to her craft in the action movie genre. SDCC is being broadcast virtually for the first time, and the Bombshell actress sat down for a one-on-one with host Terri Schwartz in an interview that was made available via YouTube.

Charlize has been starring in high-octane films for almost two decades, with some of her biggest projects including Æon Flux, Mad Max: Fury Road, Atomic Blonde, The Italian Job, The Fate of the Furious and her newest movie, Netflix’s The Old Guard.

During the panel interview, aptly named “Evolution of a Bada** – An Action Hero Career Retrospective,” Charlize revealed some things she had to do differently from her male counterparts in these films. It was a comment she made regarding her training for The Italian Job that made headlines on Friday after she revealed that she was required to undergo a vast amount of extra stunt prep that the men on set didn’t have to.

“I was the only woman with a bunch of guys, and I remember vividly getting the schedule in our pre-production, and they had scheduled me for six weeks more hard training than any of the guys. It was just so insulting, but it was also the thing that put a real fire under my a**, and I was like, ‘Alright, you guys want to play this game? Let’s go.’ And I made it a point to outdrive all of those guys.”

Charlize Theron and Jason Statham on The Italian Job set
Charlize Theron and Jason Statham on The Italian Job set Ben-Ari Finegold / Getty Images

The Italian Job featured a serious car chase where Charlize, Mark Wahlberg, and Jason Statham drove three Mini Coopers as they were being tracked down by motorcycles in the streets of Los Angeles. It looks like Charlize had to train harder and longer than male co-stars, but she made it a point to be the best driver at the end of it.

“I vividly remember Mark Wahlberg, halfway through one of our training sessions, pulling over and throwing up because he was so nauseous from doing 360s,” the 44-year-old added.

The Oscar winner also remembered a great moment where she performed a reverse spin stunt on her own in a warehouse with props and people everywhere. She recalled it being a “huge moment” for her, proving all those extra weeks and her motivation paid off.

Charlize was not bitter about her time shooting the 2003 film, and remembered it as a great experience. But it was during her stunt prep that she really came to realize the “misconception” about women in the action genre.