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Natalie Portman

ENTERTAINMENT
May 8, 2011 | By Noel Murray, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Justin Bieber: Never Say Never Paramount, $29.99; Blu-ray, $39.99 Those with chronic cases of Bieber Fever should be well-satisfied by the young pop star's concert film. Intercutting slick live performances with old home movies and new footage of Bieber on tour, "Never Say Never" effectively communicates how the teen idol became a phenomenon, along with showing what it's like to be a mere kid at the center of a multimillion-dollar business. As for the actual music, well, fans will like the energetic stage show, and even skeptics might be impressed by how hard Bieber works.
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NEWS
February 3, 2011 | By Michael OrdoƱa, Special to the Los Angeles Times
In Darren Aronofsky's psychological thriller "Black Swan," an increasingly imbalanced ballerina, Nina Sayers (Natalie Portman), struggles to break free of her inhibitions. Cast as the lead in a production of "Swan Lake," Nina perfectly embodies the purity and reserve of the white swan but falls well short of finding the aggressive sexuality and passion of its counterpart, the black swan. She is pushed ever harder by the company director to let loose, to go beyond the technical aspects of the dance and find the emotional resonance of the darker character.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 6, 2010 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
Big-city audiences are packing theaters for Hollywood's end-of-the-year flood of award contenders. Just a week after "The King's Speech" posted the best limited-release opening of the year, "The Black Swan" came in arguably even better. Director Darren Aronofsky's psychosexual drama about competitive ballet took in nearly $1.4 million from 18 theaters in eight cities, according to an estimate Sunday from distributor Fox Searchlight. Its per-theater average of $77,459 was slightly lower than that of "King's Speech," but "Black Swan," which stars Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis, debuted at more than four times as many locations, making its start more impressive.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 16, 2011
'Swan' flies high "Black Swan" has danced past the $300-million mark at the global box office, a feat few independent films are able to accomplish. The film, which earned star Natalie Portman an Academy Award for lead actress earlier this year, has quietly continued to roll out overseas. This weekend, the movie finally opened in Japanese theaters, where it collected $6.1 million, according to an estimate from distributor Fox Searchlight. That was enough to push its international total to $198.4 million, and its worldwide tally to $305 million.
NEWS
November 18, 2010 | By Lisa Rosen, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Director Darren Aronofsky's film "Black Swan" unfolds on pointe shoes, but it is not stepping lightly into the award field. The provocative film features a searing performance from Natalie Portman as Nina, a ballerina quite possibly driven to madness in her search for perfection. Ratcheting up the drama further is Barbara Hershey as matriarch Erica, a former corps ballerina who gave up everything to mother, and often smother, her talented, potentially unstable child. The two live in stifling quarters made even more oppressive by their dysfunctional relationship.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 31, 2011 | By Nicole Sperling, Los Angeles Times
In the span of about two weeks, "The King's Speech" has gone from Oscar underdog to front-runner. The World War II-era British drama took the Screen Actors Guild's top honor Sunday evening, winning the movie ensemble acting award and essentially completing the trifecta of top Hollywood guild honors; its director, Tom Hooper, captured the top Directors Guild of America award on Saturday night, and last weekend the movie walked away with the Producers...
ENTERTAINMENT
February 27, 2011 | By Rebecca Keegan, Los Angeles Times
The death of a child is every parent's worst nightmare. So when Nicole Kidman took on the role of a mother mourning the loss of her 4-year-old son in "Rabbit Hole" just a year after giving birth to a daughter in real life, she knew she was venturing into emotionally treacherous territory. "I had a conversation with my husband, because I needed him to understand that I've got to go exist in a limbo place for a while," the actress said. "It's a strange balancing act. " Yet during production, Kidman found her equilibrium faltering, unable to contain to the set the experience of her character's grief.
BUSINESS
January 21, 2011 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
With the male-skewing "The Green Hornet" currently dominating the box office, Paramount Pictures is hoping to take the top spot with a movie aimed at young women. Paramount's Ashton Kutcher-Natalie Portman romantic comedy "No Strings Attached" is the only new film opening nationwide this weekend and is generating solid interest among females under 25, according to prerelease surveys. People who have seen the results of such surveys said "No Strings" should open to about $20 million, a good start given that it cost about $25 million to make.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 24, 2011 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
With football playoffs dominating the pop culture landscape this weekend, Paramount Pictures' hope with "No Strings Attached" was to get a good number of women out to movie theaters. It succeeded, as the friends-with-benefits comedy starring Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher opened to a solid $20.3 million, according to studio estimates, to win the weekend; 70% of attendees were women, exit polling showed. It was the only new picture to open nationwide, continuing what has been a slow January at the box office.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 6, 2013 | By Michael Phillips
If anyone ever asks you what "Thor: The Dark World" has in common with "Blondie Goes Latin" and "Bomba and the Jungle Girl," here's the answer: It's the eighth movie in its franchise. The Marvel Cinematic Universe, as "Thor's" particular franchise is known, encompasses the new adventures of Iron Man, the Hulk, Captain America and so on, worth billions around the world. (Rumor has it the next all-star "Avengers" movie will be two hours of actors in costume, counting their money.) So how's this "Thor" sequel?
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