Natalie Portman Says Method Acting ‘A Luxury Women Can’t Afford’; Opens Up About Preparation For A Role

Natalie Portman, who won an Oscar for her role in the 2010 movie “Black Swan,” speaks about the ‘Method Acting” technique. She swears she never tried it because “Women can’t afford it.” She is committed to setting the record straight in a recent Wall Street Journal interview about her process of preparation for a role. 

Gotten Very into Roles

The “May December” star feels that she got attached to certain intense roles in her career but never tried “Method Acting” before. “I think it’s honestly a luxury that women can’t afford,” she went into depth. She had always tried to keep her personal life separate from the characters’ lives she plays on the big screen. 

Natalie Portman in May December
Natalie Portman in May December

Natalie Portman delves further by citing when she played the titular character in the film “Jackie.” In the 2016 film, she essayed the role of the former First Lady of the USA. She doesn’t think anyone would be understanding if she made them call her “Jackie Kennedy” on and off the sets.

Method Acting Requires Total Emotional Identification 

In “May December,” Portman portrays the life of the actor Elizabeth Berry. Berry uses the Method Acting technique to take on the psyche of the role of a woman with a sketchy past. This immersive technique needs her to blend in with the life and mindset of her character. However, Portman says that she didn’t employ this method. The hot take Natalie Portman has is that women face a lot of challenges when trying to embrace method acting. 

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Unlike male actors who are famous for doing it, female actors have responsibilities. “The needs of children and partners prevent women from using the technique,” the interview quoted her. Shia LaBeouf pulled out his tooth for “Fury, “ while Leonardo DiCaprio ate raw bison liver and slept inside a horse carcass for “The Revenant.” She has a point! 

Natalie Portman Doesn’t Shy Away from an Extreme Approach

Although immersive method acting is something she snubs, Portman, 42, utilizes extreme techniques while getting in the skin of her characters. For instance, when she filmed Darren Aronofsky’s “Black Swan,” she played Nina Sayers, an unstable yet hugely talented ballerina. Portman had to show her on the verge of a breakdown and employed extreme tactics to achieve that effect.

Natalie Portman in Black Swan and with husband Benjamin Millepied

The “Thor: Love and Thunder” star trained with a professional dancer multiple hours a day, even though she learned ballet as a child. She lost 20 pounds; “I was barely eating, I was working 16 hours a day.” Natalie Portman confesses, “It was more difficult than anything I’ve ever experienced before.” In the end, that intensity won her the Oscar. Portman is facing speculation that her 11-year-old marriage with husband Benjamin Millepied, 46, is in trouble.