Charlize Theron finally speaks out about her failed romance with Sean Penn, says she didn't 'ghost' him

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Charlize Theron Opens Up About What Really Went Down With Sean Penn


Charlize is no Casper! In a candid new interview with WSJ magazine, Charlize Theron opened up for the first time about her failed romance with actor Sean Penn. When the pair split over the summer, there were rumors going around that she had "ghosted" the Oscar winner – meaning she'd simply stopped responding to his calls.

"There is a need to sensationalize things," she told the mag (via E!). "When you leave a relationship there has to be some f**king crazy story or some crazy drama. And the f**king ghosting thing, like literally, I still don't even know what it is. It's just its own beast."

MORE: Charlize Theron and Sean Penn Split, Call Off Their Engagement

But Theron insists that the split was much less dramatic than some assumed.

"We were in a relationship and then it didn't work anymore. And we both decided to separate. That's it," she said.

She didn't clarify exactly what it was in their romance that didn't "work," but the Mad Max: Fury Road star, 40, also noted that despite their engagement, the former pair weren't as linked as some thought.

MORE: Charlize Theron Adopts a Second Child

"We were very, very new in a relationship. The stories that Sean was going to adopt Jackson, and all of that was not true," Theron said of her 3-year-old son. "It's not something that happens in 18 months. You can't do that to a child."

Photos of Sean Penn and Charlize Theron before their split:

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Charlize Theron finally speaks out about her failed romance with Sean Penn, says she didn't 'ghost' him
HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 29: (HOLLYWOOD REPORTER AND US TABS OUT) Actor Sean Penn poses with his Oscar for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role next to Charlize Theron and her Oscar for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role during the 76th Annual Academy Awards at the Kodak Theater on February 29, 2004 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Getty Images)
Charlize Theron and Sean Penn attend The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute benefit gala celebrating "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" on Monday, May 5, 2014, in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)
Charlize Theron and Sean Penn arrive at the World Premiere of "A Million Ways To Die In The West" on Thursday, May 15, 2014, in Westwood, Calif. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 18: Actress Charlize Theron and actor Sean Penn attend the Points of Light generationOn Block Party on April 18, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for generationOn)
Charlize Theron and Sean Penn arrive on the red carpet at the screening of the film Mad Max: Fury Road at the 68th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Thursday, May 14, 2015. (Photo by Arthur Mola/Invision/AP)
Actress Renee Zellweger holds the Oscar she won for best supporting actress for her work in Cold Mountain; actor Sean Penn holds the Oscar he won for best actor for his work in Mystic River, actor Tim Robbins holds the Oscar he won for best supporting actor for his work in Mystic River, and actress Charlize Theron holds the Oscar she won for best actress for her work in Monster, from left, after the 76th Academy Awards Sunday, Feb. 29, 2004, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Sean Penn and Charlize Theron pose with Pharrell Williams at Bionic Yarn, G-Star and Hennessy Privilege Celebrate Pharrell Williams and his Oscar nominated single, 'Happy' on February 27, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for One View)
Sean Penn, left, and Charlize Theron arrive at the Los Angeles premiere of "The Gunman" at Regal Cinemas LA LIVE on Thursday, March 12, 2015. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
Charlize Theron, left, and Sean Penn arrive at the Los Angeles premiere of "Mad Max: Fury Road" at the TCL Chinese Theatre on Thursday, May 7, 2015. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 10: Actor Sean Penn and actress Charlize Theron attend the 'Help Haiti Home' gala at Montage Hotel on January 10, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 10: Charlize Theron, Founder and CEO of J/P Haitian Relief Organization Sean Penn and Former President of the United States Bill Clinton attend the 4th Annual Sean Penn & Friends HELP HAITI HOME Gala Benefiting J/P Haitian Relief Organization on January 10, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for J/P Haitian Relief Organization)
PARIS, FRANCE - JULY 07: (L-R) Sean Penn and Charlize Theron attend the Christian Dior show as part of Paris Fashion Week - Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2014-2015 on July 7, 2014 in Paris, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
Charlize Theron and Sean Penn attend the world premiere of Universal Pictures 'A Million Ways To Die In The West,' at the Regency Village Theatre in Los Angeles, California, May 15, 2014. AFP PHOTO / ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
WESTWOOD, CA - MAY 15: Actress Charlize Theron and actor Sean Penn arrive at the Los Angeles Premiere 'A Million Ways To Die In The West' on May 15, 2014 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 07: Actors Sean Penn (L) and Charlize Theron attend the premiere of Warner Bros. Pictures' 'Mad Max: Fury Road' at TCL Chinese Theatre on May 7, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - JULY 07: Sean Penn and Charlize Theron attend the Christian Dior show as part of Paris Fashion Week - Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2014-2015 on July 7, 2014 in Paris, France. (Photo by Dominique Charriau/WireImage)
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Theron adopted her daughter, August, shortly after her split, but noted that Penn wasn't a part of that process even when they were together.

"We had a very clear understanding," she said of Penn. "He knew that I was thinking about filing for another adoption, but that we weren't filing together."

Penn, she noted, was good at handling boundaries with little Jackson throughout their relationship.

"There was an understanding that I was a single mom with a very young boy who I had to put in a situation where he understood that Mommy dates, but that he does not have a father," she said. "You have to be very careful and very honest about that stuff. And Sean was great with all of that."

Charlize Theron Adopts a Second Child After Sean Penn Split

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