Natalie Portman recalls reading about her ‘breast buds’ in review aged 13

‘It felt like a vulnerable position,’ recalls actor

Olivia Petter
Sunday 10 July 2022 12:43 BST
(Getty Images for Disney)
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Natalie Portman has spoken out about reading a review of herself at the age of 13 that referred to her “breast buds”.

The actor was 11 years old when she was cast in her first film, Léon, by director Luc Besson, and went on to star in several other major Hollywood films as a teenager.

Now, speaking to The Sunday Times Style, the 41-year-old explained how she feels uncomfortable with the way she was sexualised by the media at that time.

“I think, in that time, it was very normal,” she told the publication.

“Some of it was the types of roles that were being written and some of it was the way journalists felt entitled to write about it.”

Portman went on to recall one review in particular. “I remember reading a review of myself when I was about 13 that mentioned my breast buds.”

The actor went on to say how she responded by choosing to “put on all these defences” as she got older and turn down any scripts that involved sex or love scenes.

“It was like, I’m not going to be seen that way, because it felt like a vulnerable position and also a less respectable position, in some way, to be characterised like that,” she added.

Elsewhere in the interview, the actor commented on the public’s response to the physical transformation she underwent to prepare for her role in Thor: Love and Thunder.

“It’s pretty unusual and wonderful to be tasked with getting bigger as a woman,” she said.

“Most of the body transformations we’re asked to make are to be as small as possible and there’s an emotional and sociological correlate to that.”

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