Until we heard her speak at a special BAFTA screening of her latest movie, Young Adult, no-one in the Empire office quite realised what a quote machine Charlize Theron was.
Her role as “psychotic prom queen bitch” Mavis Gary in Jason Reitman's fourth movie – written by Diablo Cody – shows a different side to Charlize... One that sees her playing a complete and utter cow.
“Being a bitch wasn’t hard for me at all,” she laughs. “Okay, I take it back – that’s the stuff you dream of doing, especially having a director like Jason saying, ‘Yeah, more of that!’
Other choice cuts of Charlizeyness include this one on dealing with her co-star, a dog called Dolce:
“Jason wanted an emotional breakdown with the dog at the end, and that didn’t happen. Because that dog wouldn’t give me an emotional breakdown. That dog said, ‘You know what? You’re not going to get anything from me today.’ My face was covered in apple sauce, I had liver pate on my breasts, I was dog treat heaven, and I couldn’t get this dog to focus.”
Then there's her story about how she actually met Reitman in the first place:
"This is embarrassing, but I was at the Oscars last year, the year that Up In The Air was nominated. I got there really early with my mom and we were in the bar area and I had three glasses of champagne – we were kind of stuck in the corner – and then they finally shoveled us all into the Kodak Theatre and Jason Reitman happened to be right in front of me."
"And if I didn’t have that last glass of champagne, I wouldn’t have had the courage to do this, but I tapped him and said: 'I just wanted to tell you that Up In The Air is my favourite movie of the year' – which it was! And a month later I found myself in a restaurant, and Jason was there. I swear I wasn’t stalking him, and he came up to me and he said, 'I’ve read this script Diablo sent me last night and I think it’s going to be my next film, and I want to do it with you.' And I was just... I was actually really depressed at the time, because I was getting ready to go to Australia to do [Mad Max] Fury Road with George Miller and I knew I wasn’t available, so I thought, 'Oh my God, the one time Jason Reitman wants to do a film with me, I’m unavailable.'"
"And I went to Australia and the film pushed, and Jason found out and called me up and said, 'I think you’re available, do you want to do this with me?' And that’s the very long reason why I’m in Young Adult."
See? Quote machine. For more beautiful, wonderful quotes from the beautiful, wonderful Charlize, check out this month's mag (out today) for more from her and the rest of next year's Oscar contenders.
Young Adult will be in cinemas here in the UK come February 10 2012.