Natalie Portman is denying claims from Moby that the two had a brief fling when she was a teenager

By Rachel DeSantis
May 22, 2019 10:35 AM
Credit: Steve Granitz/WireImage; Slaven Vlasic/Getty

Natalie Portman is shooting down Moby’s claims that the two shared a brief fling nearly 20 years ago.

Moby, 53, recently recounted their alleged romance in his new memoir, Then It Fell Apart.

But according to Portman, 37, the musician’s recollection of their time together was far from accurate, as she saw him not as a romantic partner, but as a “creepy” older man who tried to overstep his bounds.

“I was surprised to hear that he characterized the very short time that I knew him as dating because my recollection is a much older man being creepy with me when I just had graduated high school,” Portman told Harper’s Bazaar UK online.

The Oscar-winning actress says she was just 18 when they met, despite Moby’s claims that she was 20, and that though they struck up a friendship, it fizzled out when she realized he had other intentions.

“I was a fan and went to one of his shows when I had just graduated,” she told the outlet. “When we met after the show, he said, ‘Let’s be friends.’ He was on tour and I was working shooting a film, so we only hung out a handful of times before I realized that this was an older man who was interested in me in a way that felt inappropriate.”

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Portman also slammed him and his publisher, Faber and Faber, for not paying closer attention to the details in sharing the story.

“There was no fact checking from him or his publisher — it almost feels deliberate,” she said. “That he used this story to sell his book was very disturbing to me. It wasn’t the case. There are many factual errors and inventions.”

Moby responded to Portman’s claims early Wednesday in an Instagram post.

“I recently read a gossip piece wherein Natalie Portman said that we’d never dated. This confused me, as we did, in fact, date. And after briefly dating in 1999 we remained friends for years. I like Natalie, and I respect her intelligence and activism. But, to be honest, I can’t figure out why she would actively misrepresent the truth about our (albeit brief) involvement. The story as laid out in my book Then It Fell Apart is accurate, with lots of corroborating photo evidence, etc.


PS I completely respect Natalie’s possible regret in dating me(to be fair, I would probably regret dating me, too), but it doesn’t alter the actual facts of our brief romantic history.”

Then It Fell Apart was released earlier this month, and his anecdote on Portman was excerpted in April in The Times.

In the excerpt, Moby wrote that Portman came backstage to meet him after a show and started flirting with him.

Moby, Natalie Portman
| Credit: Theo Wargo/WireImage

“I was nervous, so I made small talk,” Moby writes, per the excerpt. “‘We’re going to New York in a few days,’ I said. ‘For the VMAs.’ She smiled again and looked straight into my eyes. ‘I’ll be in New York, too. Can we meet up?’”

“This was confusing,” Moby continues, according to The Times. “I was a bald binge drinker who lived in an apartment that smelled like mildew and old bricks and Natalie Portman was a beautiful movie star. But here she was in my dressing room, flirting with me.”

The ”Porcelain” musician said he ended up attending the VMAs with Portman, but that eventually, she ended their relationship, beating him to the punch.

“For a few weeks I had tried to be Natalie’s boyfriend, but it hadn’t worked out,” he wrote, according to the excerpt. “I thought that I was going to have to tell her that my panic was too egregious for me to be in a real relationship, but one night on the phone she informed me that she’d met somebody else. I was relieved that I’d never have to tell her how damaged I was.”

The book is not the first time Moby has spoken of their alleged fling; in 2008, he told Spin they shared a “very brief affair” that made him the target of “nerd wrath.”

“You can’t date Luke Skywalker’s mom and not have them hate your guys,” he said, referring to Portman’s role in the Star Wars universe as Padmé Amidala.