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Natalie Portman Reveals No One Wanted to Hire Her After 'Star Wars'

Natalie Portman Reveals No One Wanted to Hire Her After 'Star Wars'

Even though Natalie Portman has 46 acting credits to her name and an Academy Award for her work in Black Swan, she wasn’t always sure her career in Hollywood was going to work.

In a piece from New York Magazine to remember and celebrate late director Mike Nichols, Natalie opened up about the struggle she had finding work after starring in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.

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Star Wars had come out around the time of Seagull, and everyone thought I was a horrible actress,” Natalie told the magazine. “I was in the biggest-grossing movie of the decade, and no director wanted to work with me. Mike wrote a letter to Anthony Minghella and said, ‘Put her in Cold Mountain, I vouch for her.’ And then Anthony passed me on to Tom Tykwer, who passed me on to the Wachowskis.”

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Posted to: Natalie Portman

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  • angelinas

    And yet Star Wars made you world-famous and gave you most of the millions of dollars you have. God I dislike it when an actor trashes work that made them famous! Natalie, people mostly remembers you from Star Wars! Not Black Swan, not Garden State, not Closer but Star Wars! Your loser no-name, gold-digging husband is swimming in that Star Wars money you earned probably. Stupid woman.

  • Pop Star

    I don’t think she’s trashing Star Wars. She’s talking about what everyone thought about her performance but to me she was the best. And her later works in Closer, Black Swan. Very impressive.

  • j k

    Nope. I don’t remember her from Star Wars at all, you’d be surprised how many people don’t like/watch Star Wars.

  • Sprite

    the fans were despondent, walker should have taken a dive like Errol Flynn in the book. instead they give a part to Jack Thompson and have a duel with an ‘apprentice’? give me a break, no wonder I won’t watch the third movie. – 7? falcon to me it looks like a psi moon chase on dragon ball z.

  • Sprite

    in a different era Natalie portrayed a very likeable Princess Amidala and definately equal in respects to Carrie’s Princess Leia.

  • LLB

    Well, but look at her acting in those films and compare to her others. BIG difference. Natalie has said several times that she, at least when younger, didn’t do well with directors who didn’t interact or offer much direction. And if you read what the other stars have said about George Lucas, he is that way as a director, much more involved with the schedule, the budget, and the special effects than with actually directing the actors.

    P.S, Benjamin Millipied was a principal at ABT, arguably the world’s foremost ballet company, and now directs another world class ballet company. HARDLY a loser, and I’m sure the man’s not poor.

    You are an idiot.

  • Sprite

    The whole burned by lava thing goes back to early drafts of the movies, and I don’t mean the actual working drafts for the prequels we got, I mean the various treatments and things that Lucas and company were working from in the 70′s and 80′s. The first draft of The Empire Strikes Back even involved Vader having a castle on the lava planet where he was burned in the duel with Obi-Wan. So basically the idea of vader having been injured by falling into lava after a duel with Obi-Wan has been there since somewhere around 1979, at the latest. The actual details that we got as the duel on Mustafar, less so.
    I had this as well. It’s where I learned about Vader falling in lava. I always imagined them fighting on wooden rope bridge over the lava for some odd reason. Probably because of Temple of Doom.
    In an interview in Starlog in 1980, Mark Hamill recounts a background story which he had been told: “I remember very early on asking who my parents were and being told that my father and Obi Wan met Vader on the edge of a volcano and they had a duel. My father and Darth Vader fell into the crater and my father was instantly killed. Vader crawled out horribly scarred, and at that point the Emperor landed and Obi Wan ran into the forest, never to be seen again.”