AceShowbiz - Natalie Portman is not one who turns a blind eye to criticism. Shortly after Rose McGowan labeled her "an actress acting the part of someone who cares" as a response to the protest cape she wore to the 92nd annual Academy Awards, the "Black Swan" star issued her own statement that addressed the backlash.
Agreeing with the former "Charmed" actress, the Oscar winner accepted that "it is inaccurate to call [her] 'brave' for wearing a garment with women's names on it." She continued, "Brave is a term I more strongly associate with actions like those of the women who have been testifying against Harvey Weinstein the last few weeks, under incredible pressure."
"The past few years have seen a blossoming of directing opportunities for women due to the collective efforts of many people who have been calling out the system," the 38-year-old went on to note. "The gift has been these incredible films. I hope that what was intended as a simple nod to them does not distract from their great achievements."
"It is true I've only made a few films with women. In my long career, I've only gotten the chance to work with female directors a few times. I've made shorts, commercials, music videos and features with Marya Cohen, Mira Nair, Rebecca Zlotowski, Anna Rose Holmer, Sofia Coppola, Shirin Neshat and myself. Unfortunately, the unmade films I have tried to make are a ghost history."
The wife of Benjamin Millepied then listed the challenges female films have to overcome to get made at studios, independently financed, distributed and even recognized for their achievements. Despite the obstacles, she declared, "So I want to say, I have tried, and I will keep trying. While I have not yet been successful, I am hopeful that we are stepping into a new day."
Portman turned heads on the red carpet of the 2020 Oscars on February 9. Wearing a Dior gown with a cape that is embroidered with the names of snubbed female directors, she told The Los Angeles Times, "I wanted to recognize the women who were not recognized for their incredible work this year in my subtle way."
The "Jackie" actress' fashion statement, however, earned her critiques including one from McGowan who tool to Facebook to speak out against her. "Some thoughts on Natalie Portman and her Oscar 'protest,' " she wrote. "The kind of protest that gets rave reviews from the mainstream media for its bravery. Brave? No, not by a long shot. More like an actress acting the part of someone who cares. As so many of them do."
"I find Portman's type of activism deeply offensive to those of us who actually do the work. I'm not writing this out of bitterness, I am writing out of disgust. I just want her and other actresses to walk the walk," the 46-year-old actress elaborated on the reasons of her disapproval. She also criticized Portman for hiring only one female director under her production company.
"I am singling [Portman] out because you are the latest in a long line of actresses who are acting the part of a woman who cares about other women," McGowan continued. "There is no law that says you need to hire women, work with women, or support women. By all means, you do you. But I am saying stop pretending you're some kind of champion for anything other than yourself."