Born June 9, 1981 in Jerusalem, Israel, Natalie Hershalg would later go on to change her name to Natalie Portman (her grandmother’s maiden name). Now, aged 29, she is one of the hottest young stars in film. She made her debut in a major film in 1994, appearing in the French action film The Professional (in French: Leon). She was 13 years old. She only took a part in the 1999 film, Anywhere But Here, after the sex scene to which Portman objected was removed from the script. She worked hard and took only parts that she felt were right for her in films. Then, in 2002, she earned the much-coveted role of Padmé Amidala in the Star Wars prequel, The Phantom Menace. Her success, at that point seemed to be assured. The critics and fans alike took notice. In addition to the other two films in the prequel trilogy to the original Star Wars series, Portman also earned critical acclaim for her work in films like the Closer and V for Vendetta. In spite of a hectic filming schedule, Natalie took time the time to earn her bachelors degree in psychology from Harvard in 2003.
Critics enjoy Portman’s work. Her piquant beauty and her ability to bring a genuine feel to her roles are primary reasons. Some point out that, while she is truly lovely, she doesn’t rely entirely on her looks to play a part or to get them. That is something refreshing in a world where many female leads started out as porn stars and super models.
Natalie won a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress for the film, the Closer, in 2004. She won the Saturn Award for Best Actress for V is for Vendetta in 2006. She also won the Teen Choice Award for Movie Actress in a Drama/Action Adventure film for Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones in 2002.
- Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
- Where the Heart Is
- Cold Mountain
- Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones
- The Closer
- Black Swan
- The Other Boleyn Girl
- Love and Other Impossible Pursuits
- V for Vendetta