Natalie Portman admits it’s “flattering” to win critical acclaim for her work.
The actress won the Best Actress prize at the 2011 Golden Globes for her role as troubled ballerina Nina in ‘Black Swan’ and says it’s great both the audiences and critics are enjoying her performance.
She said: “It’s obviously very flattering. Especially to be named in the company of the actors and the films that are being recognised this year. It’s exciting to be in a film that people like in a year of good films.
"But at the same time the real rewarding thing, apart from the work itself, is audience reaction which has been so overwhelming…The most fun is to hear people debating their different takes on what the movie is about and what’s real and what’s not real and just to see people engaging in it so passionately is just your greatest dream when you are making a movie.”
Portman – who is expecting her first baby with fiance Benjamin Millepied – says that although it was a huge honour for her to win the role of Nina, she admits she would never go to the same lengths as her alter-ego to get a job.
She said: “I don’t know that I’d kill for a role! I don’t think anything is quite that important. But yes of course there are things you really feel are right and this is an example of a role that I was very, very honoured to have the opportunity to do and excited by the chance to challenge myself in this way.”
She added though that she did not have any time to herself while filming ‘Black Swan’.
Portman revealed she could not switch off from her character because of the amount she had to work out to be at her physical peak while shooting.
She said: “It was challenging, you know, I like to shut off the character as soon as I’d finished, whether that’s finishing a take or going home for the day. It was really difficult because I had so much training outside of work to do.
“When work was done then I had to go to the gym, and then I had to get up at 5am and workout before. There wasn’t really any time to just relax and be myself.”
Work on the project was made even tougher as she often found herself unable to balance the demands of physicality with emotion, often concentrating so much she would have her tongue "hanging out".
She laughed: “Balancing the physical with the emotional because sometimes just to do a certain move you need so much concentration, my mouth would be hanging open and I’d have a concentration face, it’d be all furrowed.
“Half the time they were trying just trying to get me to not have my tongue sticking out. And then to add on to that I have to be acting!”