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March 30, 2011  | by: Brandon Kirby

Portman in "Black Swan"

A lot of controversy has bubbled up recently over the newly-discovered existence of a dancing double for Natalie Portman during her Oscar-winning performance in Black Swan.

Portman’s dancing double for the film, Sarah Lane, claimed that Fox Searchlight asked her to remain quiet about her involvement in the film until after the Oscars, E! Online reported.

“They were trying to create this facade that she (Portman) had become a ballerina in a year and a half. So I knew they didn’t want to publicize anything about me,” Lane said in an interview.

Portman Dances in "Black Swan"

This insulted Lane as she said this image of Portman learning ballet in such a short time makes the profession look easy.  “That’s the thing that bothered me the most,” she said.

Adding insult to injury, Lane’s name in the film’s credits only appears as an extra and nothing more.

Mila Kunis

Others involved in the film are adamantly defending her like her fiancé and choreographer of the film, Benjamin Millepied, and director Darren Aronofsky. Both insist that Portman did 80 percent of her own dancing.

Portman’s co-star Mila Kunis, however, is coming at this with the most ferocity.  “Natalie danced her ass off,” Kunis said. “I think it’s unfortunate that this is coming out and taking attention away from [the praise] Natalie deserved and got.”

She continued to say that Lane definitely wasn’t used for everything, describing her as a safety net.

“I had a double as a safety net. We all did. No one ever denied it,” she said.

No matter who you believe in all of this, the appearance of this dancing double does not in any way undermine Natalie Portman’s awesome Oscar win. Was the dancing double there when Portman failed to act? No. The acting was 100 percent Portman, and nobody can deny that. I didn’t watch Black Swan and come out wanting to hug Portman because of how well she danced.  I wanted to hug her because of that performance, watching her transform herself into Nina, this character whose psyche and physical well-being has such a toll taken on it. Let’s continue praising Portman for bringing that to life on screen and not let any of this controversy take that away from her.

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