Charlize Theron Says Rewards and Challenges of Motherhood Drive Her More Than Those of Acting

Charlize Theron - Harpers Bazaar
Charlize Theron - Harpers Bazaar

Josh Olins Charlize Theron for Harper's Bazaar

Charlize Theron's career isn't the driving force in her life these days.

Speaking with Harper's Bazaar for the October 2022 Process Issue — for which she appears on the cover — the actress shared that she is neither fulfilled nor challenged by acting the same way she is by being a mom to daughters August, 7, and Jackson, 10.

"When my kids say, 'Mom, nobody makes pasta better than you,' nothing gets close to that," she shared. "I don't ever need them to be like, 'Oh, you're in that movie.'"

"I am still carrying such a grudge that there's a mom in our circle who makes French toast that my kid raves about. And she's given me the recipe and I've tried it," she added.

Noting that her daughter still feels like the other mom's French toast is better, she added, "I am way more driven by that stuff."

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Charlize Theron - Harpers Bazaar
Charlize Theron - Harpers Bazaar

Josh Olins Charlize Theron on the cover of Harper's Bazaar's Process Issue

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The Oscar winner also praised her mom friends for helping her navigate the unfamiliar territories of her kids' education, which bears great difference to how Theron grew up in South Africa.

"I didn't grow up in America, so I always find myself kind of trying to keep my head above water with the school system and exams, because it's not familiar to me," she explained. "My education was just so different than what my kids are having in America. And so there are a lot of bells and whistles that come with being a parent that I didn't grow up with."

Theron went on to shout out one mom friend who texts her reminders about things like dress-up days at school.

"I'm so lucky that I have this amazing village of women taking me in under their wing," she added. "I know it's not just a single-mom thing. We just look after each other."

Jackson and August Theron
Jackson and August Theron

Charlize Theron Instagram

Theron said she wants her kids to be able to enjoy her work, which was part of her motivation for her recent role in the Netflix film The School for Good and Evil.

"The biggest driver for me was that it potentially could be something that my kids would enjoy," she said, later sharing that her kids' friends are starting to recognize her from her role as Dr. Strange's ex-wife, Clea, in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.

Through what she does on and off screen, Theron wants her kids to understand hard work is at the heart of it all.

"I think that's more important than fame or anything like that," she noted. "I saw my mom work hard, and I remember just my whole life thinking, nothing is going to get handed. You have to work harder than anybody else in the room."