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Natalie Portman felt sexualized as a child actress

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Natalie Portman has opened Pandora’s box, but first let’s take a step back, exactly in September when the hashtag #cancelnetflix has climbed the trend topics of twitter making us tremble only at the idea of ​​a lockdown bis without The Crown. To end up in the viewfinder (and to make the streaming platform lose 9 billion in a single day) the poster of the film Cuties in which the eleven-year-old protagonist of the French film by Maimouna Doucouré, appeared in a sparkling, tight-fitting jumpsuit and lipgloss on her lips, defined as “offensive” and even worse accused of conveying messages of sexualization of minors “by exploiting children and creating a disturbing atmosphere”. Netflix changed the poster (honestly from the misleading message that not only downgraded the film but distorted its meaning) by inviting you to go further and see the film, “a social story against the sexualization of children” and “the pressure that young girls suffer. on social media and from society as they grow. ” A digression necessary to underline how today compared to the past there is greater attention to narration when it comes to minors (and here too we should thank the Gen Z always in the front row when it comes to social battles) even more so if inserted into a hyper-sexualized storytelling as in the case of Cuties of the world of dance. Natalie Portman, who at 13 found herself playing the role of a Lolita on the big screen returns to the theme, declaring that she felt “sexualized” as a child and a reflection is a must.

american actress natalie portman and french actor jean reno on the set of the film

Natalie Portman and Jean Reno on the set of “Leon” in 1994

Patrick CAMBOULIVEGetty Images

Natalie Portman says she felt “sexualized” as Lolita

She was 13 when she was chosen by Luc Besson to star opposite Jean Reno in Léon. Only two years later, in 1996, in Beautiful Girls she played Marty, a 13-year-old who interacts with a grown man (Timothy Hutton). Two roles that have given her popularity and marked the start of the monopoly of her incredible career but which at the same time have taken away much more from her. Two teenagers painted following the myth of Lolita between innocence and provocation, which away from the set remained stuck on her, causing her “fear and discomfort” and conditioning the relationship with her body and others, as told by the actress herself in the podcast Armchair Expert by Dax Shepard. “I was absolutely aware that they were portraying me as a Lolita,” she said, “the fact that I felt sexualized as a child affected my way of experiencing my sexuality, scared me and made me believe that the only way I could feel safe was to look extremely conservative and serious. “

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Natalie has admitted that her cold and austere way, an urban legend in Hollywood, has been her shield for years to avoid inappropriate approaches and embarrassing looks from more mature men. “A lot of people were under the impression that I was super serious and conservative. I actually realized that I built this image consciously just to feel safe and secure,” she explained, “if someone respects me, I thought, they won’t see me as a object”. A consideration that connects to last year’s controversy, and to the harsh words with which Portman attacked the singer Moby for talking about their alleged relationship in her biography (to then retract and apologize publicly). “I was a teenager, I had just turned 18 and not 20. My memory is of a very old and creepy man who bothered me when I had just graduated from high school,” the tranchant press release issued by the actress, “seems a deliberate lie and the fact that he is using this story to sell his book bothers me as there are a lot of mistakes and inventions. I wish he or his publisher had at least contacted me to verify the facts. “

In 1997 Natalie turned down the starring role for the film Lolita by Adrian Lyne and other films in which she was asked for sex scenes or even just a provocative and mischievous way of doing things. “When I was a teenager, I didn’t want to do any sex scenes in a movie. That’s why I chose roles that were not sexy at all: I was afraid that others would continue to perceive me that way,” he continued, explaining how his desire, the desire to explore , physiological in adolescence, have suffered from this closure, “but you can’t feel safe when you see that several grown men approach you with interest and you just want to say no, no, no!”. He opened Pandora’s box, finally.

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