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Charlize Theron, Margot Robbie on the Power of ‘Bombshell’

Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie make for a powerful trio on-screen. With their latest film “Bombshell,” the award-winning actors recognize the potential for the film to make real social change off-screen.

“The response to the film has been incredible. I was hoping that it would be impactful in that way,” Robbie told Variety at the film’s Los Angeles premiere. “I really wasn’t expecting it to hit home so closely with a lot of men, which has been amazing, really amazing.”

Bombshell” brings to life the ripped-from-the-headlines tale of how former Fox News anchors Megyn Kelly (played by Theron, who also produced the film) and Gretchen Carlson (Kidman) took on former Fox News head Roger Ailes and the toxic atmosphere he’d created at the network.

“We’ve spoken about it a lot because sexual harassment isn’t an issue for women to solve. It’s something we all have to solve together,” Robbie continued. “I can only imagine every guy out there has a daughter, a wife, a mother, a friend, a girlfriend. They don’t want them to exist in a world where they might not be able to go to work, can be safe. No one wants that. … We’ll solve it together. I hope.”

Robbie plays Kayla Popsil, a composite character written to represent the stories of women who’ve survived sexual harassment both at the network and beyond.

At the Regency Village Theater in Westwood on Tuesday night, the leading trio celebrated the film and the critical support they’ve garnered for it with members of their onscreen ensemble — including John Lithgow (Roger Ailes), Mark Duplass (Kelly’s husband Douglas Brunt), Connie Britton (Beth Ailes), Ashley Greene (Abby Huntsman), Bree Condon (Kimberly Guilfoyle) and Liv Hewson (Lily) — as well as director Jay Roach and writer Charles Randolph. The next morning, “Bombshell” was honored with four Screen Actors Guild Award nominations — with individual nods for Theron, Kidman and Robbie, as well as recognition for ensemble in a motion picture. Theron and Robbie were also nominated for Golden Globe awards for their performances.

For Theron, she’s most proud to have “made this film the way we wanted to make it.” “It was a tall order to try and make something that dealt with such a serious subject matter, but to do it in a way that totally felt surprising and also felt really entertaining,” Theron said.

She continued, “And I feel like people come out of this devastated, but really enjoying the experience of sitting and watching this. I’m proud of that. I didn’t want to do something that felt like I was trying to make you sit in a classroom and, you know, learn a lesson.”

Theron concluded, “There is a real need for people to want to share their stories, and I think there’s a catharsis around that. And we’ve definitely felt that as we’ve been taking this movie around and showing it to people, which is, I think, just shows the power of story making us feel like we’re not alone. And that within that we feel braver to share our stories.”

“Bombshell” is in select theaters on Dec. 13, before opening nationwide on Dec. 20.

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