Natalie Portman is always a professional, and upon reflecting on her star-making role in Léon the Professional and some of its “cringey” aspects.
Léon the Professional was a 1994 film written and directed by Luc Besson. It starred Jean Reno, Gary Oldman, and Portman in her film debut. Portman plays a young girl named Mathilda who’s taken in by a hitman named Léon (Reno) after her family is murdered.
Unfortunately, as iconic as the film is, the legacy has been tarnished thanks to sexual abuse allegations against Bresson. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Portman stated that she was surprised by the allegations, “Yeah, of course [she was surprised]. I had never… Yeah.”
The interviewer, Rebecca Keegan, noted that she shook her head “no” whilst saying “yeah.” Portman responded, “I really didn’t know. I was a kid working. I was a kid. But I don’t want to say anything that would invalidate anyone’s experience.”
She continued, “It’s a movie that’s still beloved, and people come up to me about it more than almost anything I’ve ever made, and it gave me my career, but it is definitely, when you watch it now, it definitely has some cringey, to say the least, aspects to it. So, yes, it’s complicated for me.”
When Natalie Portman says that Léon the Professional gave her a career, she may be right. Her next role was in the iconic Michael Mann film Heat in which she shared scenes with Al Pacino. She’d go on to appear in the Star Wars prequel trilogy and has since become one of Hollywood’s best actresses with roles in V for Vendetta, Black Swan, Annihilation, and many more. Her upcoming film, May December, will premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on May 20.
The post Natalie Portman reflects on ‘cringey’ elements from her iconic first role appeared first on ClutchPoints.