Natalie Portman’s Cannes Coup D’état

While many big-name celebrities have been concentrating on the Met Gala, Natalie Portman has had her sights set on the Cannes Film Festival with plans to make appearances on and off the screens. Known primarily for her work in front of the camera, Natalie has recently been pursuing her directing ambitions. Ms. Portman will have her first full-length feature film, A Tale of Love and Darkness, ready to debut at Cannes.

Portman’s film is based on Amos Oz’s bestselling autobiography, A Tale of Love and Darkness, and is the story of a writer and journalist-turned-advocate. The film’s synopsis reveals both the historical and personal drama that developed throughout Amos Oz’s life and career.

Movie poster for "A Tale of Love and Darkness." Courtesy of Handsomecharlie Films.

“Based on Amos Oz’s international best-seller, A Tale of Love and Darkness is the story of Oz’s youth at the end of the British Mandate for Palestine and the early years of the State of Israel. The film details young Amos’ relationship with his mother and his birth as a writer, looking at what happens when the stories we tell, become the stories we live.”

A scene from 'A Tale of Love and Darkness.' Courtesy of Handsomecharlie Films.

A Tale of Love and Darkness will not be Natalie Portman’s directorial debut. Previously, Natalie has directed two short films. Portman’s first film was a romantic comedy, New York, I Love You, in which Ms. Portman spliced together ten separate stories of love and serendipity in New York City. Natalie’s second film, Eve, is a 17-minute piece romantic comedy particularly notable for starring Lauren Bacall.

Ms. Portman will debut the Amoz Oz biographical film at the Cannes Film Festival in a special screening section, when the festival kicks off on May 13.

When Ms. Portman isn’t engaged in her film screening duties, Natalie will be donating her time elsewhere. Joining Sharon Stone and the Coen Brothers, Ms. Portman has volunteered to host an AIDS fundraising gala on the Cannes sidelines. The event, sponsored by The Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR), will be hosted by the Hôtel du Cap-Eden-Roc, just a short drive from the Cannes Film Festival.

Also participating in the fundraising event will be Jake Gyllenhaal, Milla Jovovich, Diane Kruger, Isabella Rossellini, and Formula One racing champion Lewis Hamilton.

Musical entertainment will be provided by Mary J. Blige and Imagine Dragons.

The annual event, where Ms. Portman has volunteered to participate in, is an annual event and a big draw in Europe with last year’s gala raising $35 million. All totaled, amfAR has raised $140 million for AIDS research and education since 1993.

Natalie Portman is also working on a musical drama set against the Austin, Texas music scene. The film, Weightless, directed by Terrence Malick, also stars Christian Bale and Michael Fassbender. Natalie will play the primary object of affection in a love triangle.

Natalie Portman, born Natalie Hershlag, comes from Jewish heritage and was raised in Jerusalem, Israel, until her family relocated to the United States. Natalie was moved from Washington D.C. to New York, where Ms. Portman was discovered by an agent while working at a pizza parlor. Natalie didn’t receive worldwide attention until her role as Queen Amidala in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999). Ms. Portman followed up that success by starring in a number of romantic comedies, earning an Oscar nomination for 2004’s Closer. Ms. Portman also received an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress for her role in Black Swan (2010).

[Featured image: Natalie Portman courtesy of Handsomecharlie Films.]