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Julia Roberts on Natalie Portman in ‘Black Swan’

Actors on actors

“It is an interesting endeavor, watching a friend in a film. It is a risk to agree to write an article about a friend in a film. With someone like my subject today, Natalie Portman, it seemed worth the risk. She is always lovely, always watchable, always interesting. Then there is ‘Black Swan.’ If only I could reach out from the page now and offer you a glass of terribly good wine and ask you to sit a while.

Natalie Portman in the new film by Darren Aronofsky is a ballerina. I cannot think of anything more accurate and complimentary to say about her in this role: She is a ballerina! One is so lost in the aching beauty, the elegant moves and the quiet mania of her pursuits, she, Natalie, ceases to exist.

It is an intense and at times brutal film to watch. There were times when I was watching through tiny cracks in my quaking fingers. But to see her in this role was worth the one night of tossing and turning.

I, as many, first fell deeply in love with Natalie in Luc Besson’s film ‘The Professional.’ A performance like the one she delivers in ‘Black Swan’ affirms that my professional admiration for her was well placed. Now as the years have kindly made her a li’l friend (that’s a joke for Natalie), I am simply beaming with pride for her and want only to have her over to our home to hug her, tell her all the wondrous things we think of her, rub her weary feet and make her the biggest, most delicious dinner she could ever eat!”

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