Natalie Portman: “No director wanted to work with me,” after The Phantom Menace. In a piece featuring remembrances of late director Mike Nichols, Portman talks about how he vouched for her.
With Thor: The Dark Work on the horizon, Marvel and star Natalie Portman are launching the Ultimate Mentor Adventure to inspire more girls to explore STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) fields. Girls 14 and up are eligible to apply. UL (Underwriters Laboratories), Dolby Laboratories, National Academy of Sciences and Girl Scouts USA are also sponsoring the effort.
Portman, who reprises her role as astrophysicist Jane Foster in the film, also had some interesting things to say about female characters:
“I want them to be allowed to be weak and strong and happy and sad – human, basically. The fallacy in Hollywood is that if you’re making a ‘feminist’ story, the woman kicks ass and wins. That’s not feminist, that’s macho. A movie about a weak, vulnerable woman can be feminist if it shows a real person that we can empathize with.”
Forbes, always one for making lists, has ranked Natalie Portman (aka Padmé Amidala — please tell me you knew that) as the star worth the most bang for the buck. For every dollar she is paid in salary, the studio makes $42.70. Apparently, she had some rather surprising hits outside of Black Swan. (Who knew No Strings Attached made such a big profit?)
Twilight’s Kristen Stewart was #2.
Another Lucasfilm alum making the list was Shia LaBeouf (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) at #3 with $35.80 returned for every dollar he’s paid. (Let’s hear it for him beating out Robert Pattison!)
More lists are surely soon to follow.
Natalie Portman and Benjamin Millepied have gotten married, Us Weekly reports. They exchanged vows “in a Jewish ceremony at a private home near Big Sur, Calif.”
The two met on the set of Black Swan. Millepied, a professional dancer, was the movie’s choreographer and also played Portman’s dance partner. They have a year-old son, Aleph.
Random… George Lucas at Fashion Week? Yes, indeed: Lucas was spotted at the Rodarte show on Tuesday with girlfriend Mellody Hobson. According to one report, Lucas is “obsessed” with the work of the women behind the label, sisters Kate and Laura Mulleavy. (Maybe George is thinking about costumes for one of his art films?)
Sith strategists? Forbes’ Alex Knapp looks at five leadership mistakes of the Galactic Empire.
It’s an industry. In his latest Film Critic column, John Scalzi looks at why Star Wars just won’t go away.
Haters gonna hate. Has-been mouth-frother Glenn Beck went on a rant about Star Wars this week. In addition to hating on The Phantom Menace (so last week) he also hated on… Red Tails? Really? For what it’s worth, Rick McCallum is thrilled.
Listen. Geeky band The Board of Education has a cute song about Star Wars called ‘Why Is Dad So Mad?’
Young Archer here is well on his way to complete Star Wars indoctrination. (via)
- Mark Hamill, new to Twitter, did a brief fan Q&A on Tuesday. Topics included Alec Guinness, the most difficult Star Wars actor and the craziest thing a fan has asked him to sign.
- Obi-Wan is one of Empire’s ten movie figures better than real dads. He only lied for your own good, Luke. Also on the list? Indiana Jones.
- The Death Star PR folks have written an open letter to Natalie Portman regarding her newborn son.
- Jess whips up outfits inspired by Luke’s Dagobah gear and Ahsoka in Clone Wars S3.
- Check out Redditer Punqington’s awesome Millennium Falcon wedding cake.
- Apparently the new Miss USA, California’s Alyssa Campanella, is a Star Wars fan.
People reports that Portman and fiancé Benjamin Millepied have had a son. Somehow I doubt they’ll be naming him ‘Luke,’ but you never know… In any case, congratulations to the couple and their new arrival!
Fake-pundit fun. Stephen Colbert blasted Mike Huckabee for his comments on Natalie Portman’s pregnancy. “Look, I’m no fan of single mothers either. But it’s Natalie Portman we’re talking about. That kid she’s pregnant with is Luke Skywalker,” Colbert said. “So logically, if you’re against her pregnancy that means you’ve aligned yourself politically with Emperor Palpatine. You’re alienating all of Tatooine. It’s a swing planet.” Of course Tatooine is a swing planet.
Legal. Lucasfilm is back in court again – the British Supreme Court this time – over the Shepperton studios stormtrooper replicas.
Random. Harrison Ford is helping to develop a Facebook game. Okay, so it’s an environmentally-concious Facebook game… But it’s still a Facebook game. Which I guess is better than watching him get his chest waxed again.
There were few surprises at tonight’s Oscars: Lone genre Best Picture nom Inception was awarded mostly in technical categories (including Visual Effects… Sorry, ILM.) And Natalie Portman did indeed win Best Actress for Black Swan.
For the rest, The King’s Speech cleaned up with 4 awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor for Colin Firth.
Batman Jesus Christian Bale took home Best Supporting Actor for The Fighter. But perhaps most mind-blowing to this former teen of the 90’s: Trent Reznor now has an Oscar (for The Social Network score.)
As for the ceremony itself… It was pretty standard; All the real fun was (of course) partaking in all the snark on Twitter. I did greatly enjoy the auto-tune, though.
And yes, Irvin Kershner did make the In Memoriam reel, as did modelmaker Grant McCune.
Goals. Carrie Fisher is Jenny Craig’s newest celebrity spokesperson. “I would like to have the option of getting back into the metal bikini. I won’t be doing that, but I’d like the option,” she told UsMagazine.com.
Sports. I don’t get this in the least and it’s no doubt irrevelant at this point, but the deep thinkers at the New York Post pulled out a Return of the Jedi spoof/thing last week. I hear the Jets won, if that means anything.
In the world… Hollywood cameras keep rolling in Tunisia (Tatooine) through political turmoil.