Posted on Thursday, July 25th, 2013 by Angie Han
Between her sharp intellect and proactive attitude, Natalie Portman‘s foray into directing always seemed more like a question of “when,” rather than “if.” And indeed, back in 2007, she began prepping her first feature, based on the memoir A Tale of Love and Darkness by Israeli writer Amos Oz.
The project got pushed to the back burner while Portman honed her skills on short films like “Eve” and her New York I Love You segment, but now it seems she’s ready to get the ball rolling again. According to Oz, Portman is looking to visit Israel this fall to get ready, so that shooting can get underway early next year. Hit the jump for all the details.
Oz gave the status update to Reuters. “[Portman] read A Tale of Love and Darkness and asked me for the rights to make a film adaptation around five or six years ago,” he said. “I agreed because of my high esteem for her work. She’s an excellent actor.” He reports that he’s been helping with the script, and that Portman plans to shoot in January after making preparations this September.
Here’s a description of Oz’s book (via Amazon):
Tragic, comic, and utterly honest, this extraordinary memoir is at once a great family saga and a magical self-portrait of a writer who witnessed the birth of a nation and lived through its turbulent history.
It is the story of a boy growing up in the war-torn Jerusalem of the forties and fifties, in a small apartment crowded with books in twelve languages and relatives speaking nearly as many. His mother and father, both wonderful people, were ill-suited to each other. When Oz was twelve and a half years old, his mother committed suicide, a tragedy that was to change his life. He leaves the constraints of the family and the community of dreamers, scholars, and failed businessmen and joins a kibbutz, changes his name, marries, has children, and finally becomes a writer as well as an active participant in the political life of Israel.
A story of clashing cultures and lives, of suffering and perseverance, of love and darkness.
Portman’s kept busy since returning from maternity leave last year. She stars in Thor: The Dark World later this fall, and in Terrence Malick’s Knight of Cups next year. Currently, she’s shooting Jane Got a Gun, on which she also serves as producer. She’s also been rumored for the Nazi Germany drama In the Garden of Beasts, but she should be able to clear some time in her upcoming schedule.
For a taste of Portman’s directorial skills, check out her short film “Eve” below.