Natalie Portman and Benjamin Millepied couldn’t have picked a more perfect spot for a wedding filled with romance, inclusivity and bohemian bonhomie.
They exchanged vows on a starlit night in Big Sur on Aug. 4, 2012, surrounded by local wildflowers and with traditions that reflected her Jewish faith, his French nationality and her adherence to a strict vegan diet, Glamour reported at the time. Celebrity friends were there, including Mike Nichols, Diane Sawyer, Macaulay Culkin and Ivanka Trump, who attended with her husband Jared Kushner, Portman’s 2003 Harvard classmate.
Sadly, Portman and Millepied’s idyllic wedding didn’t lead to a happily ever after. The Academy Award winner, 42, and her former dancer husband, 46, have separated, following revelations that he allegedly had an affair with Camille Étienne, a 25-year-old French climate activist, Us Weekly reported.
“After news of his affair came out, they’ve been trying to work on their marriage but are currently on the outs,” a source told Us Weekly. The estranged couple are the parents of two children, Aleph, 12, and daughter Amalia, 6. They sparked speculation about the status of their marriage on their 11th wedding anniversary, when Portman was spotted without her wedding ring during an event in Sydney, Australia.
Natalie Portman is seen without her wedding ring as she returns to Sydney to support Angel City Football Club. pic.twitter.com/ZXGJbVYCnb
— Natalie Portman Updates (@nportmanonline) August 4, 2023
Perhaps Portman shouldn’t be surprised by Millepied’s inconstancy. After all, he broke the heart of his live-in girlfriend, dancer Isabella Boylston, when he reportedly left her after meeting Portman, according to OK! Millepied got to know Portman in late 2009 when he began working as a choreographer and actor on her film, “The Black Swan,” in which Portman played a doomed ballerina.
Millepied and Boylston were still together at the time, OK! reported. A year later, Millepied and Portman were engaged and expecting their first child. She’d go on to win the best actress Oscar for “The Black Swan” in the spring of 2011.
Portman later said that she knew Millepied was “the person” for her because of how they met, working together on “Black Swan,” Us Weekly reported.
“I think I was in, like, dreamland,” Portman said during a SiriusXM Town Hall interview in 2018. “He was teaching me to dance. You know, one of those romantic (stories) … It was definitely exciting and fun. It was beautiful. I don’t know about instant. It was like I really got to know him and that was when it seemed like, ‘Oh this is the person.’”
Fast forward to their 11th wedding anniversary. Portman may be done struggling with whether to try and make the marriage work, according to Us Weekly.
“Natalie believes Benjamin’s affair was a brief and stupid liaison that means nothing to him,” a source told Us, adding that Portman was “humiliated” by the affair rumors. Another insider, however, said that Portman didn’t know whether she and her husband would be able to rebuild their relationship. “Right now, they are talking and working on it together for the sake of their children,” the insider said, adding that Millepied “regrets” his actions.
Portman has had to deal with other fractured relations since that starry Big Sur night. She and Jared Kushner got to be good enough friends at Harvard that she was on the guest list for Kushner’s lavish 2009 wedding to Ivanka Trump at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey. Portman returned the favor three years later by inviting the couple to her small, intimate wedding to Millepied, which took place at a private home in Big Sur, Glamour reported.
But after Kushner and Ivanka Trump helped her reality TV star father get elected president in 2016, and they became polarizing figures in his contentious White House, Portman announced that she and Kushner were no longer “friendly.” Portman was one of Hillary Clinton’s celebrity supporters, and she blasted Kushner’s father-in-law at the 2017 Women’s March in Los Angeles.
In a 2018 appearance on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” Portman confirmed reports that he wasn’t a great student at Harvard and said that “all of the friends he’s lost through politics is like exfoliating. I was like, ‘OK.’”
“So you’re a dead skin cell?” Colbert retorted, to which Portman stated, “Proudly.”
“Unfortunately it’s not very — there’s not a lot funny to say about someone you were friends with becoming a supervillain,” Portman stated.
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