• The Hollywood Reporter on LinkedIn
  • Follow THR on Pinterest

Natalie Portman Slammed by 'Black Swan' Double

Natalie Portman

Sarah Lane of the American Ballet Theatre claims the Oscar winner only did "five percent" of full-body dance shots.

Dancing drama: The ballerina who worked as Natalie Portman’s double in Black Swan says the actress' actual dancing in the movie has been highly exaggerated.

“Of the full body shots, I would say 5 percent are Natalie,” Sarah Lane, 27, of the American Ballet Theatre, tells EW. “All the other shots are me.”   Black Swan choreographer Benjamin Millepied, who is engaged to Portman, told the Los Angeles Times earlier this week that Lane "just did the footwork, and the fouettés, and one diagonal [phrase] in the studio. Honestly, 85 percent of that movie is Natalie.”   But Lane argues that Portman's face was digitally grafted onto her body.   “The shots that are just her face with arms, those shots are definitely Natalie,” she tells EW. “But that doesn’t show the actual dancing.” Lane admits that she was never promised a particular title for her six weeks of work on the film, though she was disappointed to see that she is credited only as as “Hand Model,” “Stunt Double,” and “Lady in the Lane” (a brief walk-on role).   Lane claims that Black Swan producer Ari Handel specifically told her not to talk about her work to the press, even though she claims there was no such stipulation in her contract, EW reports.   “They wanted to create this idea in people’s minds that Natalie was some kind of prodigy or so gifted in dance and really worked so hard to make herself a ballerina in a year and a half for the movie, basically because of the Oscar,” says Lane. “It is demeaning to the profession and not just to me. 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 won a Best Actress Oscar in February for her role.   Reps for Portman, Fox Searchlight and Handel have yet to comment.