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Natalie Portman: ‘Actresses still being limited to objects of desire’

Natalie Portman is disappointed that actresses are still being cast as “objects of desire”.
The American actress has won acclaim and is attracting Oscar buzz for her portrayal of the late Jacqueline Kennedy in the new film Jackie.
But while the former U.S. First Lady joins a list of many strong women that Natalie has played onscreen, the 35-year-old star is adamant that Hollywood has a long way to go when it comes to embracing feminism.
“We are so often put in roles as objects of desire, with a male view, as opposed to subjects of desire with complex weaknesses, and moments of strength and focus – and you can be all of those things,” she said in an interview with Radio Times.
Natalie, who is currently pregnant with her second child, also emphasised that inequality for women isn’t just a Hollywood problem, but is an issue which crosses various sectors.
“We’re having a problem with female leadership – in business, in government, in storytelling,” she shared. “I think it has to do with being a boss. We’re still having a problem, first with women in that position, and second there are so many obstacles in their way.”
When it comes to playing Jackie, the widow of U.S. President John F. Kennedy, Natalie adds that she has come to understand how forward thinking she was. In particular, the actress was impressed by how Jackie managed to take the “reins” of her own narrative when it came to her public persona.
“And it was very ahead of her time. Now, we see so many people defining the image they want other people to have of them via their social media, but she was doing it 50 years ago,” she added.
“For me, it’s about trying to be authentic, and trying to give people a sense of who you are, while maintaining some modicum of privacy.”

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