Why The Natalie Portman "Black Swan" Scandal Is Good For Everyone Involved

black swan

Natalie Portman’s pro-ballerina double caused a stir this week when she said Portman did about five per cent of the intense dancing in “Black Swan.”

Sarah Lane, a soloist with the American Ballet Theatre, got pissed when she noticed she was credited only as a “stunt double” and “hand model” (ouch) in the film’s credits.

Now, she says she was told to keep her mouth shut about how much of the movie she supposedly carried — so that “Black Swan” producers could construct an Oscar-worthy narrative about Natalie’s determined ballerina transformation.

(Fox Searchlight, the film’s production company, released a statement yesterday reiterating that Portman did almost all of the dancing.)

At first glance, this bombshell seems to take some of the shine out of “Black Swan” — but really, who is it hurting?

Portman already has her Oscar — and pretty much her pick of Hollywood roles. Her production company, Handsomecharlie Films, has two movies in development, and she stars in blockbusters “Your Highness” and “Thor” this spring.

Lane, who would have otherwise been unknown to the public at large, is getting her 15 minutes of fame (and maybe she deserves it — who knows whose jet├ęs those actually were?).

This story could even be rolled into a boost for the arts: ABT should mount a performance of “Swan Lake” with Lane as Odette/Odile and promote the heck out of it.

And the most unsurprising benefit: all of this chatter throws some spotlight back to the movie, which still lingers in a few theatres and comes out on DVD Tuesday.

So anyone who wants to take a hard second look at Portman’s performance — and to slow-mo search for Lane’s contributions — is nothing but good for “Black Swan.”

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