Published Feb 14, 2020Natalie Portman has responded to Rose McGowan's criticism of her Oscar red carpet tribute to female directors.
Portman had the names of snubbed female directors stitched into a cape that she wore over her dress on the red carpet last Sunday (February 9). McGowan lambasted the fashion choice as "an actress acting the part of someone who cares."
She also denounced it as "the kind of protest that gets rave reviews from the mainstream media for its bravery."
Now, Portman has issued a statement in response, agreeing that she should not be labelled as "brave" for what she wore.
"I agree with Ms. McGowan that it is inaccurate to call me 'brave' for wearing a garment with women's names on it," Portman said in a statement to CNN. "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."
She added, "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 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."
Portman added that she regretted the small number of films that she has made with women, but clarified that she had also worked on projects like commercials, music videos and short films with directors like Marya Cohen, Mira Nair, Rebecca Zlotowski, Anna Rose Holmer, Sofia Coppola, Shirin Neshat and herself.
"Unfortunately, the unmade films I have tried to make are a ghost history," she said.
She listed the myriad barriers woman-helmed films face in getting made — from financing to festival inclusion to distribution to awards — but maintained that she is dedicated to "keep trying."