‘Black Swan’ Filmmakers Deny Natalie Portman Dance Cover-Up

(Fox Searchlight)

By Daniel Gates

(Fox Searchlight)

The filmmakers behind Black Swan are denying a dancer’s allegation that she performed almost all of the ballet attributed to Natalie Portman. Sarah Lane, a soloist with the American Ballet Theatre who worked as Portman’s dance double, claims the actress only did about “5 percent” of the full body shots audiences see in the film. She also says producers pressured her to downplay her involvement to preserve the alleged illusion.

Fox Searchlight and filmmakers have now released a joint statement: “We were fortunate to have Sarah there to cover the more complicated dance sequences and we have nothing but praise for the hard work she did.” “However, Natalie herself did most of the dancing featured in the final film.”

Lane spoke out after Benjamin Millepied, the movie’s choreographer (and Portman’s fiance), said in an interview that the actress did about 85% of the dancing. That’s not true, according to Lane, who claims Portman’s head was digitally placed on the professional ballerina’s body, and that the overwhelming majority of actual dance moves are hers.

“It is demeaning to the profession and not just to me,” says Lane. “I’ve been doing this for 22 years… Can you become a concert pianist in a year and a half, even if you’re a movie star?” Portman, who has yet to comment on the controversy, won an Oscar for her performance.

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