When it comes to Black Swan, everyone wants their proper bit of credit. First costume designer Amy Westcott was upset Rodarte got all the glory after designing seven costumes, and now Natalie Portman‘s body double is refuting claims that the actress did 85% of the dancing in the film. She says it’s more like a measly 5%.
Earlier this week, Portman’s fiance Benjamin Millepied had this to say to the LA Times: “It was so believable, it was fantastic, that beautiful movement quality. There are articles now talking about her dance double [American Ballet Theatre dancer Sarah Lane] that are making it sound like [Lane] did a lot of the work, but really, she just did the footwork, and the fouettés, and one diagonal [phrase] in the studio. Honestly, 85% of that movie is Natalie.” And now Lane is all like, “Ummmm…no.” In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, she fights back:
Of the full body shots, I would say 5% are Natalie. All the other shots are me. The shots that are just her face with arms, those shots are definitely Natalie, but that doesn’t show the actual dancing. They wanted to create this idea in people’s minds that Natalie was some kind of prodigy or so gifted in dance and really worked so hard to make herself a ballerina in a year and a half for the movie, basically because of the Oscar. It is demeaning to the profession and not just to me.
If it’s true that producers told her to keep quiet and that Millepied is blatantly lying to the press, we truly feel for Lane. Unfortunately, her remarks come off as a bit petty:
I’ve been doing this for 22 years…. Can you become a concert pianist in a year and a half, even if you’re a movie star? I mean, from a professional dancer’s standpoint, she doesn’t look like a professional ballet dancer at all and she can’t dance in pointe shoes. And she can’t move her body; she’s very stiff. I do give her a lot of credit because in a year and a half she lost a lot of weight and she really tried to go method and get into a dancers head and really feel like a ballet dancer.
We would love to hear a statement from Portman or director Darren Aronofsky, but will they be able to set the record straight?