Sarah Lane Has Every Right to Natalie Portman's Oscar

Lindsay Mannering

natalie portmanHere we go. Black Swan was one of the worst movies I've ever seen and I'm embarrassed for anyone who thought it was good. Looking at you, Mom, and the Academy. It was an art house movie without the art, a thriller without any thrills. Sarah Lane is on my side. She's bitter about the whole thing, too. She and I should join together to strip Natalie Portman of her undeserved Oscar.

Sarah Lane was Natalie's body double in the movie. While Black Swan choreographer and Natalie's baby daddy, Benjamin Millepied, says that 85% of the movie is Natalie, Sarah says that 95% of the dance scenes show Sarah, and only 5% show the Oscar winning actress.

Hmm, what do we believe here. The studio wants us to think that Natalie became a professional ballerina in a matter of months, and Sarah wants us to remember that, uh, that's kind of impossible. Team Sarah!

Sarah Lane spoke out to Entertainment Weekly against the widely held and perpetuated belief that Natalie did most of the dancing in the film:

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. 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?

You said it, Sare. You can't. I totally agree that the media has tried to make us think that Natalie is some super woman. Harvard degree, beautiful, talented ... blah blah blah we get it. She has it all. But could she really have skipped 20 years of dance training and become a prima ballerina in a year? I don't think so.

Some might say that Sarah's quote is just sour grapes. I think they're ripe, juicy, heavy grapes on the vine that need to be picked and hurled at Fox Searchlight, who's trying to cover up any information that says Natalie didn't do all the dancing.

I believe Sarah. I believe that she did over 90% of the dance scenes -- and I don't hold it against Natalie. All I want from her, and from the Black Swan producers, is an acknowledgment that the dance was done by a body double named Sarah Lane.

You know what would've been honest and appropriate? If Natalie had thanked Sarah in her acceptance speech. She thanked the hair and makeup team, the costume designer, but not her dance doubles. It would have honored the dance profession and art form if Black Swan admitted that "No, an actress could never have done all of those incredible moves, and we're lucky to have dance doubles who did most of the work" instead of saying that they were lucky to have them nearby as consultants, and that Natalie was the prima ballerina on set.

Come on, Hollywood. Give credit where credit is due.

Do you think it matters that Sarah Lane gets credit, or do you think that Natalie did most of the work?

Photo via John Steven Rodriguez/Flickr

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