A lot of coddled Hollywood actresses would steer clear of a role that had them plunging through frozen lakes, leaping icy cliffs, and spending several months 300 miles north of Vancouver in the teeth-rattling cold. But not Charlize Theron, the female lead in John Frankenheimer’s twisty crime caper ”Reindeer Games.” In fact, the 24-year-old Theron, who also stars in the Oscar-nominated ”Cider House Rules,” was attracted to the film expressly because of these high-intensity demands.
”I like being physical,” says the former ballet dancer. ”I told stories for most of my life physically without doing anything verbally. And I’ve always been very athletic and up for a challenge.” The thrill-seeking Theron even chose to do many of her own stunts, which apparently peeved her film double. ”My stunt girl hates me,” Theron says, ”because we’d fly her out and then I’d be like, ‘Let me do it.”’
Even costar Ben Affleck concedes that Theron was better about the film’s taxing conditions than he was. ”I complained more when we had to dive into icy water and come out — seven times,” he says of working in Canada’s below zero weather. ”It was not the most cushy shoot in the world where you wear nice clothes, do your scenes, and go to craft services. We were running through the snow and diving in water.” And Affleck’s final verdict on his bombshell costar: ”As far as normal human beings go, she was a really good sport. But as far as beautiful pampered actresses go, she was a phenomenally good sport.”