Natalie Portman reflects on Black Swan diet following her latest intense body transformation for Thor

Natalie Portman has revealed she was asked to get 'as small as possible' for her Oscar-winning performance as Nina in Black Swan

Natalie Portman talks Black Swan diet and Thor transformation
(Image credit: Getty)

Natalie Portman touched on her Black Swan diet in a recent interview about her upcoming movie, Thor: Love and Thunder, admitting that she was asked to become ‘as small as possible’ for her career-defining role. 

The 41-year-old actor won an Academy Award for her performance in the 2010 psychological thriller after receiving critical acclaim for her portrayal of troubled ballerina, Nina Sawyers – a role that pushed her to both her physical and mental limits. 

Natalie famously endured a grueling training regime to get into character for the movie, taking dance lessons for up to 8 hours a day, six days a week under the guidance of retired New York City ballet dancer Mary Helen Bowers. 

She was also required to follow a highly restrictive diet to achieve the petite body type commonly associated with ballerinas, losing 20lbs in six months by drastically reducing her food intake. It was reported at the time that Natalie, who has been a vegetarian since the age of nine, followed a strict calorie-controlled diet and mainly relied on fruits and vegetables to get her through the intensive rehearsals. 


(Image credit: Getty)

The restrictive exercise and diet plan is now a distant memory for the V for Vendetta star, who has undertaken a completely opposite approach to prepare for her role in Thor: Love and Thunder. The Marvel Studios adventure-action film, which hits US movie theatres on 8 July, will see Natalie transform from her previous character as astrophysicist Dr. Jane Foster in the 2011’s Thor and 2013’s Thor: The Dark World into the indomitable Mighty Thor. 

Speaking to Variety, Natalie has reflected on how different the preparation for her upcoming role is from that of Nina Sawyers. 

“On Black Swan, I was asked to get as small as possible,” she said. “Here, I was asked to get as big as possible. That’s an amazing challenge – and also state of mind as a woman.

Natalie Portman

(Image credit: Alamy)

“To have this reaction and be seen as big, you realise, ‘Oh, this must be so different, to walk through the world like this,’” she said. “When you’re small – and also, I think, because I started as a kid – a lot of times I feel young or little or, like, a pat-on-the-head kind of person. And I present myself that way, too, because of that.”

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.