Skip to main content

Natalie Portman doesn’t cherish her Oscar like other actors would. The Star Wars alum once shared it’d been a while since she even saw hers. But she was in no hurry to find it, as she considered the golden statue to be a ‘false idol.’

Natalie Portman was surprised with how ‘Black Swan’ turned out

Natalie Portman posing while wearing a dress.
Natalie Portman | Robyn Beck / Getty Images

As some may know, Darren Aronofsky’s 2010 film Black Swan won Portman the Oscar for best actress the following year. It was a film that covered themes Portman was very passionate about.

“I always wanted to do a film relating to dance. I had danced when I was younger until I was about 12, and I guess I always sort of idealized it – as most young girls do,” Portman said in an interview with The Mirror. “So when the director, Darren Aronofsky, had this incredible idea not just relating to the dance world, but also to this really complicated character – or two characters – it was an amazing opportunity, and something completely exciting.”

At the same time, however, The Professional actor didn’t expect the film to turn out the way that it did.

“When I saw the final cut I was completely surprised by what the movie was like. I thought we were shooting something like almost documentary style, and then I watched it and it was an over-the-top thriller,” Portman told Vanity Fair. “It was an amazing wake-up call that film is a director’s medium and as an actor, you have no idea what’s going on and you’re being led and shaped.”

Natalie Portman put her Oscar away because she believed it’s a ‘false idol’

Although Portman was initially grateful to win the Oscar, she once admitted that she didn’t keep the golden statue around. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, the Thor star shared what she did with her Oscar years after winning it.

“I don’t know where it is,” she said. “I think it’s in the safe or something. I don’t know. I haven’t seen it in a while.”

It was a conversation with Aronofsky that also helped shape her perspective on the Oscar award.

“I mean, Darren actually said to me something when we were in that whole thing that resonated so deeply,” she continued. “I was reading the story of Abraham to my child and talking about, like, not worshipping false idols. And this is literally like gold men. This is literally worshipping gold idols — if you worship it. That’s why it’s not displayed on the wall. It’s a false idol.”

Natalie Portman considered ‘Black Swan’ a risk


Mila Kunis and Natalie Portman Hated Doing Their Sex Scene in ‘Black Swan’

In a 2015 Commencement speech at Harvard University, Portman shared her initial thoughts about starring in Black Swan. The film would later go on to bring her much recognition and notoriety, but the Harvard graduate recognized the challenge it presented.

“It didn’t feel like courage or daring that drew me to it. I was so oblivious to my own limits that I did things that I was woefully unprepared to do. And so the very inexperience that in college had made me feel insecure and made me want to play by others’ rules now was making me actually take risks I didn’t even realize were risks,” she said.

But Portman later found herself rewarded for taking a chance. Not only on a professional level but on a personal level, as Black Swan marked the beginning of her family.

“If I had known my own limitations, I never would have taken the risk. And the risk led to one of my greatest artistic and personal experiences, in that I not only felt completely free, I met my husband during filming,” she added.