We could be living in a new age of Natalie Portman, as the actress has multiple film projects in the pipeline. It’s been revealed today that Portman will headline a new drama about former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy called Jackie, for Chilean director Pablo Larraín (No). Darren Aronofsky (who directed Portman’s Oscar-winning performance in Black Swan) is attached to produce the title, which will be securing international rights during the just-opened Cannes Film Festival. The movie will focus on the first fours day in the life of Jacqueline Kennedy immediately following the assassination of her husband, President John F. Kennedy Jr.
Portman, according to Deadline, expressed interest in Jackie as early as 2012. The film has an even longer backstory, as previously Aronofsky himself was attached to direct the project, setting Oscar-winning actress and Aronofsky’s then-girlfriend Rachel Weisz (The Constant Gardener) to star. When the couple broke up, both parties dropped out. While Larraín may not have the same name recognition as Aronofsky, the director has solidified himself as an internationally respected filmmaker. His 2012 historical drama No (which starred Gael Garcia Bernal) focused on the 1988 Chilean ad initiative to defeat dictator Augusto Pinochet; the film earned an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Language Film. Most recently, the director won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2015 Berlin Film Festival for his acclaimed drama The Club. Jackie was initially written by Noah Oppenheim (The Maze Runner). The film is set to star shooting sometime later this year.
Moreover, it marks yet another high profile gig in the works for Portman, who aside from her work in the Thor films has had a relatively low profile since winning the Oscar for Black Swan in 2010. We recently announced that Portman is set to play Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in On the Basis of Sex, a new biopic from director Marielle Heller (Diary of a Teenage Girl). Portman will also co-star in the 1930s-set drama Planetarium to be directed by French filmmaker Rebecca Zlotowski (Grand Central). She’s also being courted for the lead role in Annihilation, a hopeful science fiction franchise starter based on the novels by Jeff VanderMeer; Ex Machina‘s Alex Garland is set to direct that film for Paramount. Portman is not outright attached yet, but allegedly, a top-tiered group of actresses including Tilda Swinton (Only Lovers Left Alive) and Julianne Moore (Still Alice) are being considered for supporting roles.
Portman also completed work on two new films from director Terrence Malick (The Tree of Life). One of them is called Knight of Cups, which made its debut at the 2015 Berlin Film Festival, and the second film is called Weightless – both films co-star Christian Bale (The Fighter) and Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine). Also in the can is Jane Got a Gun, a new western that Portman starred in and produced that is set to come out later this summer. That film, which was directed by Gavin O’Connor (Warrior) and co-stars Ewan McGregor (The Ghost Writer), generated negative publicity when original director Lynne Ramsay (We Need to Talk About Kevin) didn’t show up for work on the first day of shooting, prompting a near-complete retooling of the cast.
If that weren’t exhausting enough, the actress is currently at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival, where she will debut A Tale of Love and Darkness, a film which she directed, wrote, and stars in. It marks her feature directorial debut and will be shown as a special screening at this year’s festival.