Natalie Portman on Vox Lux, the dark side of fame, and the unique toll of being 'pop star famous'

Natalie Portman sits down with Tom Power to talk about the inspiration behind her critically-acclaimed performance in Vox Lux, and how she got into the mindset of a pop star struggling with addiction and PTSD.

In her new film, Vox Lux, she plays a pop star trying to balance the chaos of her public/private life

Originally published on September 11, 2018

The dark side of fame gets the limelight in Vox Lux, Natalie Portman's latest film. Portman plays the survivor of a school shooting who goes on to become a major pop star. With that fame comes some brutal side effects, such as addiction and PTSD — and that's before she learns of a terrorist attack that may have been inspired by her music.

Portman sat down with q's Tom Power at the Toronto International Film Festival to talk about the inspiration behind her critically-acclaimed performance in Vox Lux, and how she got into the mindset of such a unique character.

Having started her acting career at the age of 11, Portman, who is now 37, was able to bring more than 20 years worth of experience to the role, but as she told Power, she still had to do some research to understand the lifestyle of a pop star. 

"It's a different thing, I think, for actors than for pop stars because we are selling the fact that we're characters in different movies that change movie to movie, as actors, whereas a pop star, you're really selling your persona, which you have to be all the time. When you go out to dinner and you have to be as fabulous as you are when you're on stage as a pop star, as opposed to actors [who can] regularly kind of disappear into their private lives."

Vox Lux is playing now at the Toronto International Film Festival. 

Listen to the full conversation with Natalie Portman near the top of this page. 

Produced by Elaine Chau

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