Exclusive: Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis Recall Their Sex Scene in 'Black Swan'

Article excerpt

LOS ANGELES - When we interviewed Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis for their roles in director Darren Aronofsky's psychological thriller, "Black Swan," we saw how the two ladies were opposites in real life.Natalie, 29, was reserved and soft-spoken while Mila, 27, was more open and aggressive.In the film, both play ballerinas for a New York City ballet company. Nina (Natalie) has the plum role of a White Swan who turns into a Black one. The role is perfect for her until artistic director Thomas Leroy (Vincent Cassel) is impressed with a new dancer, Lily (Mila) who is sensual and fits the part of the Black Swan. As she and Lily compete for the role, Nina discovers her dark side as well.We asked the lovely Golden Globe awardee, Natalie, how she prepared for this very demanding role. "I started training for the film a year ahead of time," she said. "I was doing three hours of ballet training, an hour of swimming, and an hour of toning and then toward the end, during the last two months of the training before the film, I added on the choreography. Benjamin Millepied, the choreographer, started working with me so that was an extra three hours. It was like eight hours a day of training and I was on a very strict diet. I wasn't unhealthy. I was still eating but very little. I had my little meals that were prepared and that was all I could eat during the day so I didn't go out with my friends. I couldn't obviously have meals. I wasn't drinking at all."So you can get an idea of what the lifestyle it is like. It is very monastic. It was kind of a nunnery for a year but a physically rigorous nunnery. It was great because I really was able to understand what that dancer's life is like. For my first meal after the film, I just started carbo loading. I had pasta, bread and ice cream. It was a long [fasting] period and I am a pleasure seeker. I like my food."So what did she think of the approach of Thomas Leroy (Vincent), who is an unusual ballet mentor because he tries to relax his ballerinas by making them sexually liberated or asking them to be sexually comfortable with themselves, we asked her."Well, it's clearly harassment on the surface," she pointed out with a laugh. "But I think for the character, it actually gives her the key to becoming an artist because he's telling her, all you care about is pleasing everyone else. Give yourself pleasure. Go home, give yourself pleasure, and that really is the key for her to become an artist. She has to stop caring about what everyone else thinks and making herself happy. That is her maturing process so even though on the surface it is very inappropriate, it actually does give her the key."* * *Mila Kunis, who impressed Darren in her Rachel Jansen role in "Forgetting Sarah Marshall," talked about what she learned of the ballet world. "Going into the ballet world, I didn't know what to expect," she admitted. "The ballerinas are the most competitive, most brutal group of ladies I have ever met in my life. Truly, they are ruthless. They are very judgmental of themselves, and incredibly judgmental of one another. That being said, they are very skinny and they are incredibly disciplined. So both Natalie and I trained for several months in LA and in New York, 7 days a week, 4 or 5 hours a day. …