Photo by Gage Skidmore, courtesy Flickr
Hollywood star Charlize Theron turned to acting only after knee injuries derailed her first dream of becoming a ballet dancer. Initially struggling to win roles because of her Afrikaner accent, the South Africa-born Theron trained herself to sound American by watching hours of television. She began to find success with films such as The Devil’s Advocate and The Cider House Rules, but her breakout came starring in 2003’s serial killer biopic Monster. She won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe. In 2007, she created the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project to help fight HIV and AIDS.