Natalie Portman on the Oscar Buzz for Black Swan
Posted 09.20.10 by reelz
In the upcoming supernatural thriller Black Swan, Natalie Portman plays a dancer who finds herself in a competitive rivalry when she's elevated to prima ballerina for her company's production of Swan Lake. The movie is generating Oscar buzz for Portman after its showing at the Tororonto International Film Festival. She spoke with Flicks and Bits about reaction to the movie and working with director Darren Aronofsky.
When asked about the Oscar buzz and movie's reception, Portman had this to say.
The best thing with this movie is that everyone seems to be having a strong visceral response to Darren's filmmaking. It's both thought provoking, emotional, and pure entertainment. It seems like everyone is responding really well which is a great outcome for the film. It's very complimentary and flattering that people are talking about (Oscars), but obviously what we do is about wanting to make a film that people connect to, that's the biggest prize and also getting the opportunity to work with everyone I got to work with on this film.
Portman first talked with Aronofsky about the movie eight years ago, when it was in the idea stage.
We started talking about it in 2002 when I was still in College. Darren had a very specific idea. What he told me in our first meeting became what the movie ended up being. He had the entire idea, it was not written but all of the themes were there, all of the plot points were there, the whole environment. So to have that sitting in the back of your mind for 8 years is a great help, it exists in your brain because you've been living with it for a long time, processing it when you're not even aware of it.
Perhaps, not surprisingly, Portman felt a strong connection with Aronofsky.
Darren gave us these really complicated characters and he also gave us the freedom to bring what we wanted to the roles as well, it was a great generosity to be given the role and then being asked what do you think and have that openness, it was amazing. My experience working with Darren felt kind of telepathic. I never had that with any director before (laughs), Darren could say half a word and I felt like I could understand him, and I could say half a word and he could understand me. We were in some strange zone of focus that allowed us to share this intention.
Black Swan, which opens in theaters on December 1, also stars Mila Kunis, Winona Ryder, Vincent Cassel, and Barbara Hershey.