“I can’t do the Method thing. I did it once… and I was just exhausted” – Charlize Theron
Though the 2019 drama Bombshell was not a box office hit, it has received wide acclaim for the film’s performances, chief among the praise has been for Academy Award winner Charlize Theron as former Fox News anchorwoman Megyn Kelly. Theron has since been nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress for her uncanny performance as Kelly, and she spoke to the Los Angeles Times about how she portrayed Kelly and why she doesn’t consider herself a Method actress.
Of course, in the film Theron plays one of the most famous newswomen in recent history. Because the audience for the film would undoubtedly be very familiar with Kelly, Theron felt it was important to portray her as accurately as possible — which she feels actually helped her understand Kelly better as a person. She explains, “The work that I had done with the dialect and just watching her mannerisms, how she pulls her face or how she holds herself, and the way she sounds, actually really informed me on how she was revealing herself emotionally.”
What Theron looked for in Kelly is repetition in the way she speaks, and she used that to discern what it revealed about Kelly’s emotions. Theron continues, “You just start to see this repetitive voice that pops out and then you kind of go back and you can see that there’s a similarity in the emotion; it’s a little bit like building a puzzle. But I’m not Method. My capacity is, you know, maybe two, three hours a day if that. And then I’m trying to keep the movie going and doing other things.”
Though Theron is probably best known for fully immersing herself in the role that won her an Oscar (in 2003’s Monster), she claims that she is not a Method actor because of a challenging experience early in her career. She reveals, “I can’t do the Method thing. I did it once, for Devil’s Advocate, and I was just exhausted. It was really hard to go to those deep, dark places because I was so tired. It was good for me to figure this out, and I am much better now at understanding and living and breathing in the moment with the character.”