September 10, 2004 01:00 PM

Charlize Theron’s boyfriend, actor Stuart Townsend, is explaining how the Monster Oscar winner recently injured herself on the on the set of her movie Aeon Flux, and he says what happened could have been much worse.

Speaking to the Associated Press, Townsend, 31, said Theron, 29, was wearing platform shoes while executing a back-flip somersault when she slipped and hurt her neck.

“The slipped disc went almost into the spinal cord,” he says. “She’s fine, but could’ve been in a lot of trouble.”

As for why a stunt double wasn’t doing the scene, Townsend explains: “She’s just that kind of girl. She’s like, ‘Yeah, I’ll do anything.’ But I said, ‘The stunt girl is going to start working and not you.'”

The incident occurred Aug. 30 on the Berlin set of the sci-film. Theron, who reportedly was taken to a German hospital for examination, later returned to California to consult with her personal physicians.

“She’s resting and hopes to be back to work soon,” said her L.A.-based publicist Amanda Silverman.

Although it has been reported that Theron will be laid up for six weeks, there’s no official word on when shooting will resume on Aeon Flux, which costars Frances McDormand, Marton Csokas and Jonny Lee Miller. The delay will likely affect Theron’s next project, Class Action, scheduled to begin production early next year.

The South African beauty will be seen next in Head in the Clouds, a World War II romance opening Sept. 17 and costarring Townsend.

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