Natalie Portman has an Oscar, a Harvard degree, a hot-French-ballerina husband, two adorable children, and worldwide acclaim.
And she just doesn’t give a damn anymore.
Portman, who has maintained a divide between her personal life and her professional work for most of her twenty-four year professional career, has recently been saying whatever she wants.
It started as the #MeToo stories broke — Portman began to reckon with her experiences with harassment. “I went from thinking, ‘I don’t have a story’ to ‘Oh, wait, I have 100 stories,’” she said.
Then, she quietly did the unthinkable by refusing to accept the Genesis prize — publicly criticizing the Israeli government without renouncing Israel. (However you may feel about it, you have to admit that the brilliant, lifelong Israel-supporter whose entire extended family lives in the country had a lot to lose by taking this stand.)
Then, on Thursday night, Portman told Stephen Colbert exactly what she really thinks of Jared Kushner, a former friend of hers from their Harvard days.
“We were friendly,” Portman said of Kushner, who graduated Harvard in 2003, the same year as Portman. “Unfortunately,” she added, “There’s not a lot funny to say about someone you were friends with becoming a super villain.”
Natalie Portman is one of the loveliest women alive and we have always mildly resented her for it. But now, there can be no turning back. All hail Natalie Portman: She is the best of Queen Esther and of Vashti, of early Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the present-day Notorious One, of Queen Amidala, of Jackie O, and the rapping version of herself she played on SNL.
Admitting we have a Jared Kushner problem is the first step on all of our recovery as a Jewish nation, and we accept our Queen’s leadership in this process. Godspeed Natalie, godspeed.
Jenny Singer is the deputy Lifestyle editor for the Forward. You can reach her at Singer@forward.com or on Twitter @jeanvaljenny