February 12, 2020
#Metoo activist and actress Rose McGowan slammed Natalie Portman in a Facebook post for wearing her custom Dior cape with gold-embroidered names of female filmmakers who were passed over for best director nominations at this year’s Academy Awards.
In the post, McGowan accuses Portman of failing to support female film-makers and calls her a "fraud." She blasts Portman for only being directed by 2 women (including her self-directed film A Tale of Love and Darkness) during her "very long career." Portman’s company, Handsomecharlie Films, has completed seven films to date with only one female directed movie which was her own.
McGowan said Portman made “the kind of protest that gets rave reviews from the mainstream media” but was “more like an actress acting the part of someone who cares. As so many of them do.”
McGowan adds: “I find Portman’s type of activism deeply offensive to those of us who actually do the work. I’m not writing this out of bitterness, I am writing out of disgust. I just want her and other actresses to walk the walk.”
Read McGowan's full post here:
Some thoughts on Natalie Portman and her Oscar ‘protest.’ The kind of protest that gets rave reviews from the mainstream media for its bravery. Brave? No, not by a long shot. More like an actress acting the part of someone who cares. As so many of them do.
I find Portman’s type of activism deeply offensive to those of us who actually do the work. I’m not writing this out of bitterness, I am writing out of disgust.
I just want her and other actresses to walk the walk.
Natalie, you have worked with two female directors in your very long career- one of them was you. You have a production company that has hired exactly one female director- you.
What is it with actresses of your ilk? You ‘A-listers’ (🤮) could change the world if you’d take a stand instead of being the problem. Yes, you, Natalie. You are the problem. Lip service is the problem. Fake support of other women is the problem.
As I wrote in my book Brave, what goes on behind the screen, goes onscreen, goes into the world. And it’s a pervasive sickness that needs its own medicine.
What you do affects the world, Natalie. As does what you do not do.
I am singling you out because you are the latest in a long line of actresses who are acting the part of a woman who cares about other women. Actresses who supposedly stand for women, but in reality do not do much at all. Of course women in the world will keep buying the perfumes you promote, the movies you make, and think they’re buying into who you are. But who are you?
I was at a Women in Film event that you spoke at once, Natalie. You reeled off depressing statistics and then we all went back to our salads. I quickly realized you and the other women speakers (and that joke of an organization) are just... frauds. You say nothing, you do nothing.
There is no law that says you need to hire women, work with women, or support women. By all means, you do you. But I am saying stop pretending you’re some kind of champion for anything other than yourself.
As for me, I’ll be over here raising my voice and fighting for change without any compensation. That is activism.
Until you and your fellow actresses get real, do us all a favor and hang up your embroidered activist cloak, it doesn’t hang right. -RM
While McGowan hated on Portman's couture - other’s loved the red carpet fashion statement.
Photos by Kevin Mazur x Getty Images
New York Times and INYT fashion director/critic, Vanessa Friedman praised Portman's accessory choice in this tweet:
Los Angeles Times reporter, Amy Kaufman shared this tweet in support of Portman's protest cape from the Oscars 2020 red carpet:
Natalie Portman has not responded to McGowan's message.