Natalie Portman (Hebrew: נטלי פורטמן, born Natalie Hershlag; June 9, 1981) is an Israeli American actress. Her first role came in the 1994 independent film Léon (known in the United States as The Professional). She achieved wider fame after playing Padmé Amidala in the Star Wars prequel trilogy. Her Comic Book Hottie fame credit is her role in
V for Vendetta
. Portman, who has said "I'd rather be smart than a movie star," completed a bachelor's degree in psychology at Harvard College while she was working on the Star Wars films.
Portman was born in Jerusalem, Israel. Her father, Avner Hershlag, is an Israeli doctor specializing in fertility and reproduction (reproductive endocrinology). Her mother, Shelley Stevens, is an American homemaker who now works as her agent. Portman's maternal ancestors were Jews from Austria and Russia, and her paternal ancestors were Jews who immigrated to Israel from Poland and Romania. Her paternal grandfather's parents died in Auschwitz, and her Romanian-born great-grandmother was a spy for the British during World War II. In 1984, when Portman was three years old, the family moved to the United States.
Portman has been a vegetarian since childhood and became a vegan in 2009 after reading Jonathan Safran Foer's Eating Animals. She does not eat animal products or wear fur, feathers, or leather.
Natalie Portman Pictures
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