Natalie Portman Cast In Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan

Good news: Natalie Portman has signed on to star in Darren Aronofsky's potential next movie.

Bad news: Darren Aronofsky's next movie is probably not Robocop...

...but instead a supernatural thriller set in the world of New York City Ballet. Yes, you read that correctly!

Aronofsky became attached to Black Swan in early 2007, but the film was put into turnaround by Universal. The project is apparently making the rounds to studios and specialty divisions, with Portman as part of the CAA package. Mark Heyman, co-producer of The Wrestler, has done a rewrite of the original script by John McLaughlin.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Portman would play a veteran ballerina who finds herself "locked in to a competitive showdown with a rival dancer, with the stakes and twists increasing as the dancers approach a big performance." But it isn't as simple as that — the big twist is that Portman's character is not sure whether her rival is a supernatural apparition or if she is having delusions. Sounds like a genre-thriller with award potential.

I'm not immediately sold on the short logline, but with exceptional talent like Portman and Aronofsky involved, I'm sure it will be great. Aronofsky could make a film about an empty white room, and I'd be in line opening day to pay $15. And hey, I'm sure a lot of people had no interest in seeing a film about an aging professional wrestler...

I find it hard to imagine that a studio won't jump immediately at this project, especially with Aronofsky coming hot off a critically acclaimed and award nominated film, complete with Portman locked in as part of the package. If a sale happens soon, Swan could be in production by year's end.

Aronofsky was also developing a reboot of Robocop for MGM, which the studio originally hoped to have in theaters for 2010. MGM recently moved expectations to 2011. And maybe one of the reasons I'm not so-sold on the project is because I've been waiting to see what Aronofsky could do with a big high concept project like Robocop, or one of his more original stories. I very much hope he gets the chance to make Noah's Ark one of these days.