Academic, star, actress and mother, Natalie Portman, sits down with ELLE Canada to discuss how she does it all.
They married last summer in a high-style vegan extravaganza. So I wonder if finding herself an Oscar winner, a wife and a mother to Aleph in the space of a couple of years has changed her priorities. "I've got more patience, definitely," she says. "Just by looking at everyone and realizing that someone's their mother."
Even journalists? She laughs. "When you're famous, you put walls up because people want too much from you-strangers get too close," she says. She shrinks into the sofa and puts her arms up as a mock barrier. For a moment she looks uncomfortable and unhappy, but then she brightens again.
Having a baby, she explains, means she's chatting with people who stop her-in a café, in a store-to ask about her little one, "and it's nice." Portman has been quoted as saying that now that she's a mother, she wants to dress "more like a lady."
Today she is tailored and classic, but she'll admit she still likes "happy clothing," much to her stylist's chagrin. "She's like, ‘Stop dressing like a child!'" she says, laughing.
Off the red carpet, Portman is usually found in skinny jeans and Converse, with her hair pulled into a low-maintenance knot. The bun, she tells me, is because she and her sister are both "blessed" with bushy "Christmas tree" hair.
There's more laughter as she grimaces and supports an imaginary triangle of hair with her arms. Honestly, it's pretty difficult to picture. Today her hair is straight and impossibly shiny. She sits with her back ramrod straight, a hangover from the training for Black Swan.
"Though I kind of wore myself out with ballet," she admits. So far, "mommying" has been helping to keep her in shape. (She doesn't have a live-in nanny; when pressed, she says she thinks "it would be scary to wake up and there is a woman in your room.")
But as an actress, Portman benefits from having a flexible schedule. "I've been really lucky in that I can nap when he naps," she says. But, she adds, "like everyone else, I'm scared about what happens when I go back to work."
But go back to work she shall. After taking time out in 2011, Portman is filming back-to-back Terrence Malick projects this year with Cate Blanchett and Christian Bale.