Charlize Theron, South Africa
This A-list actress was born in Benoni in South Africa and has Dutch and German ancestry as well. She grew up on a farm in Benoni and later moved to Italy for a year with her mum, Greta to pursue her love for ballet at age 16.
After that year, she then relocated to the New York this time on her own to pursue her dancing career. That was truncated by an injury which took a toll on her. She suffered from huge depression.
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Her mother gave her a vote of confidence and bought a one-way ticket to Los Angeles to try her hands on acting.
Her debut film was a cameo in Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest after that her career spiraled upwards with major film roles in the Devil’s Advocate and The Cider House Rules, and the world acclaimed Italian Job. It was her role in Monster that won her Best Actress at the coveted 76th Academy Awards.
She became a US citizen in 2007 and continues to live in Los Angeles. She told Total Film Magazine that she was self-motivated to succeed because she had no family in the US.
“I could be on a flight back to South Africa. I didn’t have a family in the US; I didn’t have a support system here. That drove me. I was responsible for myself, and I could not take anything for granted.”