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NATALIE PORTMAN NEWS - 2005

'Star Wars' Theme To Be Released As a Single
20 April 2005
Die-hard Star Wars fans will have something extra to purchase when the final installment is released next month - the theme tune is set to be released as a single. The song - composed and conducted by five-time Oscar winner John Williams and played by the London Symphony Orchestra - could force its way into the top 10 in music charts around the world, a rare achievement for a choral and orchestral piece. Sony BMG will release "Battle Of The Heroes" on May 23. The song depicts the fateful struggle between Jedi knight Anakin Skywalker and his mentor Obi-wan Kenobi. Star Wars: Episode III Revenge Of The Sith is the final installment in the six-part series and stars Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman and Hayden Christensen. It hits cinemas worldwide on May 19.


Final 'Star Wars' Episode Is Reportedly Rated PG-13
11 April 2005 (StudioBriefing)
Star Wars: Episode III -- Revenge of the Sith, starring Hayden Christensen, Ewan McGregor and Natalie Portman, has become the first film in the franchise to be given a PG-13 rating by the Motion Picture Association of America's Classification and Ratings Administration, several websites reported Saturday, citing sources with the MPAA. According to the reports, the film received a PG-13 rather than the usual PG for the other Star Wars episodes because of "sci-fi violence and some intense images." The film is set for release on Thursday, May 19.


Portman Wows German Crew with Language Skills
23 March 2005
Actress Natalie Portman impressed everyone on the Berlin set of her latest film V For Vendetta when she started speaking fluent German. Unlike many actors, who would be silenced by the language barrier, linguistic Portman, 23, immediately started communicating in the native language. A source says, "She just turned up one day talking German. It has made her very popular with the Germans on the crew." The Star Wars actress, educated at top American university Harvard, is fluent in Hebrew, French and Japanese, as well as German. V For Vendetta explores how different life would be if Germany had won World War II.


Scarlett Set for 'Indiana Jones 4'?
14 March 2005
Harrison Ford is set for a new sidekick when he returns to the big screen as Indiana Jones - in the shape of actress Natalie Portman. Tom Cruise has been championing the Oscar nominee for a part in pal Steven Spielberg's fourth Indiana Jones movie as the pair work together on Armageddon drama War of the Worlds. Cruise has been working with Johansson on the third Mission: Impossible movie and he's convinced she'll be perfect for the new Jones film, according to Australia's NW Magazine. An insider says, "Steven was saying there is a shortage of young actresses who can carry off a strong role. He considered Natalie Portman, but she's too connected with Star Wars - Tom suggested Scarlett."


Portman Apologizes for Western Wall Kiss
2 March 2005
Natalie Portman accepts her kissing scene in the shadow of Jerusalem, Israel's Western Wall was an unfortunate mistake. The Israeli-born actress stirred up controversy last week by kissing actor Aki Avni for their new movie Free Zone near the holy prayer site. Portman, Avni and the film's crew were escorted from the religious site by local police after Jewish bystanders took offence and started shouting at the pair. In a statement released on Monday, the Closer actress says, "I really don't want to offend anyone's beliefs or impose anything on anyone and it was mistaken to do it. As soon as it offended people, we moved. We had a very hectic work schedule, so we weren't thinking. We shouldn't have done it." The incident underlined the sensitivity of the site, a remnant of the biblical Jewish temples - the holiest place where Jews can pray.


Portman Upsets Jews with Western Wall Kissing Scene
25 February 2005
Natalie Portman has stirred up controversy in her native Israel by kissing actor Aki Avni in the shadow of sacred site the Western Wall in Jerusalem. The Closer star and Avni were shooting a romantic scene for new movie Free Zone near the holy prayer site, when Jewish bystanders took offence. One bystander says, "People were shouting that they were being immoral and police asked the two to leave the area. They agreed." According to a head rabbi at the site, the actors' actions had violated a strict code of conduct that prohibits anything romantic at the site.


'Star Wars' Bosses Warn Websites Again
22 February 2005
Movie bosses financing forthcoming prequel Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge Of The Sith are threatening to take legal action against internet sites that leak pictures and plot details. Currently, various websites are displaying photographs of a pregnant Padme Amidala, played by Natalie Portman, and a new android villain named General Grievous. Other shots online include an aggressive light-saber duel between Anakin Skywalker and his former mentor Obi-wan Kenobi - which leaves Skywalker horribly scarred and propels him to don the black suit of Darth Vader. Producers of the film had issued a warning to various internet sites last year, and have now renewed their threat of legal action. Revenge Of The Sith is due to hit American cinemas on May 19.


'The Aviator' Revs Up for Oscars
25 January 2005 (StudioBriefing)
Martin Scorsese's The Aviator was given a big Oscar take-off this morning as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that the Howard Hughes biopic had received 11 nominations, more than any other film. The nominations included best picture, director, actor (Leonardo DiCaprio), supporting actress (Cate Blanchett), and supporting actor (Alan Alda). The film's closest competitors were Million Dollar Baby and Finding Neverland with seven nominations each. Aviator, Baby, and Neverland were joined in the best film category by Ray and Sideways. Clint Eastwood received an acting and a directing nomination for Baby. Jamie Foxx also received two nominations, for best actor in Ray and best supporting actor in Collateral. Nominations in the top categories:

Best picture: The Aviator, Finding Neverland, Million Dollar Baby, Ray, Sideways

Best director: Martin Scorsese - The Aviator, Clint Eastwood - Million Dollar Baby, Alexander Payne - Sideways, Taylor Hackford - Ray, Mike Leigh - Vera Drake

Best actor: Don Cheadle - Hotel Rwanda, Johnny Depp - Finding Neverland, Leonardo DiCaprio - The Aviator, Clint Eastwood - Million Dollar Baby, Jamie Foxx - Ray

Best actress: Annette Bening - Being Julia, Catalina Sandino Moreno - Maria Full of Grace, Imelda Staunton - Vera Drake, Hilary Swank - Million Dollar Baby, Kate Winslet - Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Best supporting actress: Cate Blanchett - The Aviator, Laura Linney - Kinsey, Virginia Madsen - Sideways, Sophie Okonedo - Hotel Rwanda, Natalie Portman - Closer

Best supporting actor: Alan Alda - The Aviator, Thomas Haden Church - Sideways, Jamie Foxx - Collateral, Morgan Freeman - Million Dollar Baby, Clive Owen - Closer

Best original screenplay: The Aviator, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Hotel Rwanda, The Incredibles, Vera Drake

Best adapted screenplay: Before Sunset, Finding Neverland, Million Dollar Baby, The Motorcycle Diaries, Sideways

Best foreign film: As It Is In Heaven, The Chorus, Downfall, The Sea Inside, Yesterday.


Globes Are No Crystal Ball
17 January 2005
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association distributed its largesse around fairly evenly Sunday night, thereby giving no film a special boost for Oscar consideration. The Paramount/Miramax film The Aviator picked up most of the organization's Golden Globe awards, but that was only three, including best dramatic movie, best actor in a dramatic movie (Leonardo DiCaprio), and best original score (Howard Shore). Twentieth Century Fox's Sideways received two awards, including best comedy and best screenplay (Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor). Warner's Million Dollar Baby also received two awards, including best actress in a dramatic movie (Hilary Swank) and best director (Clint Eastwood). Other winners included Jamie Foxx for best actor in a comedy or musical (Ray); Annette Bening for best actress in a comedy or musical (Being Julia); Clive Owen for best supporting actor (Closer); and Natalie Portman for best supporting actress (Closer).


The Aviator Flies at the Golden Globes
17 January 2005
A number of movies took home high-profile honors, but ultimately it was The Aviator that dominated the Golden Globes, winning three awards including Best Picture (Drama). The Howard Hughes biopic also walked off with Best Actor (Drama) for Leonardo DiCaprio and Best Score, though Clint Eastwood (Million Dollar Baby) bested Martin Scorsese for the Best Director award. Baby's Hilary Swank nabbed Best Actress, while Closer pulled a two-fer in the supporting categories, winning Supporting Actor and Actress for Clive Owen and Natalie Portman. Sideways continued its winning streak with Best Picture (Comedy/Musical) and Best Screenplay, and the Comedy/Musical acting honors went to expected winners Jamie Foxx (Ray) and Annette Bening (Being Julia). Other film winners included The Sea Inside (Foreign Language Film) and Alfie (Best Song for "Old Habits Die Hard"). Over on the TV side, it was hello to some newcomers, as Desperate Housewives won Best Comedy and Best Actress (Comedy) for Teri Hatcher and Nip/Tuck was the Drama winner; Ian McShane (Deadwood), Jason Bateman (Arrested Development), and Mariska Hartigay (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit) were also all first-time winners. Robin Williams was this year's Cecil B. DeMille honoree.


The Aviator Flies at the Golden Globes
16 January 2005
A number of movies took home high-profile honors, but ultimately it was The Aviator that dominated the Golden Globes, winning three awards including Best Picture (Drama). The Howard Hughes biopic also walked off with Best Actor (Drama) for Leonardo DiCaprio and Best Score, though Clint Eastwood (Million Dollar Baby) bested Martin Scorsese for the Best Director award. Baby's Hilary Swank nabbed Best Actress, while Closer pulled a two-fer in the supporting categories, winning Supporting Actor and Actress for Clive Owen and Natalie Portman. Sideways continued its winning streak with Best Picture (Comedy/Musical) and Best Screenplay, and the Comedy/Musical acting honors went to expected winners Jamie Foxx (Ray) and Annette Bening (Being Julia). Other film winners included The Sea Inside (Foreign Language Film) and Alfie (Best Song for "Old Habits Die Hard"). Over on the TV side, it was hello to some newcomers, as Desperate Housewives won Best Comedy and Best Actress (Comedy) for Teri Hatcher and Nip/Tuck was the Drama winner; Ian McShane (Deadwood), Jason Bateman (Arrested Development), and Mariska Hartigay (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit) were also all first-time winners. Robin Williams was this year's Cecil B. DeMille honoree.


Sheridan Tops Mr. Blackwell's Worst-Dressed List
12 January 2005
Desperate Housewives star Nicolette Sheridan's fashion sense has earned her top place on style critic Mr Blackwell's 45th annual list of worst-dressed celebrities. The Desperate Housewives star, noted for her sexy outfits, has caught the eye of Blackwell for all the wrong reasons. He says, "In barely-there bombs, she's a taste-free pain. Let's crown her the Tacky Temptress of Wisteria Lane." Lindsay Lohan landed in second place on the list, with Blackwell deeming her "over-hyped and under-dressed", while sisters Jessica Simpson and Ashlee Simpson tied for third place. The "fabulous fashion independents" who won praise from Blackwell for 2004 are Nicole Kidman, Natalie Portman, Barbara Walters, Kate Winslet, Annette Bening, Oprah Winfrey, Scarlett Johansson, Gwen Stefani, Jennifer Garner and Sheridan's Desperate Housewives co- star Teri Hatcher. Blackwell's previous worst-dressed star, hotel heiress Paris Hilton, dropped to number five. The top 10 is as follows: Nicolette Sheridan, Lindsay Lohan, Jessica Simpson and Ashlee Simpson, Courtney Love, Paris Hilton, Serena Williams, Britney Spears, Paula Abdul, Meryl Streep, Anna Nicole Smith.


'Star Wars' Actors Reunited
6 January 2005
Actors Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Natalie Portman and Ewan McGregor have teamed up with other stars of all six Star Wars movies for a new Vanity Fair photo spread. The American magazine grouped together 22 major performers in the legendary franchise, inviting cast members from the original 1977 film Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope to this year's final installment Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge Of The Sith. Mastermind George Lucas, who directed four of the intergalactic movies, joined Ford, Fisher, Portman and McGregor as well as original Luke Skywalker star Mark Hamill, Samuel L. Jackson, Liam Neeson and Hayden Christensen. Robots R2-D2 and C3PO also joined their human co-stars for the reunion shoot. Lucas admits the final part of the opening trilogy marks the end of an era in his career - and he now plans to stop making successful films. He says, "I'm going to make movies nobody wants to see. I've earned the right to fail."



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