Charlize Theron has claimed producers for The Italian Job tried to make her do an additional six weeks of car training compared to her male co-stars – but Mark Wahlberg was the one who threw up.
The Mad Max star appeared with Edward Norton, Jason Statham and Mark Wahlberg in the 2003 heist movie.
Speaking at a Comic-Con@Home panel, the Oscar-winning actor recalled feeling “insulted” when she realised how different women were treated in the action film genre.
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However, she also said the incident had made her determined to “outdrive all of those guys”.
“For sure, The Italian Job was a great experience, in the sense that I realised there was still so much misconception around women in the genre, even though in that film the action is really based on cars,” she said during the panel.
“We had to physically do a lot of that stuff. The only good thing that came out of that experience was that there was a real pressure to pull off those stunts with the actors.”
Theron added that there was an “unfair process”, recalling: “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 car training than any of the guys.”
“It was just so insulting,” she continued. “But it was also the thing that put a real fire under my ass. And I was like ‘alright, you guys want to play this game? Let’s go’. And I made it a point to out drive all of those guys.”
Theron also claimed that Wahlberg had to pull his car over and throw up during a particularly intense training session. “He was so nauseous from doing 360s,” she said.
She pointed out that the perception of women in action films has changed in recent years.
“The good news now is that we’ve kind of changed the genre for women,” she said. “I think there’s great evidence where we now know you can’t hide behind ignorance anymore. Audiences love these films.”