Natalie Portman is well-versed in Dior. The French house crowned the American actor the face of its Miss Dior Chérie perfume after the runaway success of Darren Aronofsky’s deeply unsettling Black Swan in 2011, and she’s been giving good Dior gown since. Last year at Cannes, for example, Portman revived one of the most memorable dresses of Monsieur Dior’s tenure: the ornately beaded autumn/winter 1949 “Junon,” named after the Ancient Roman goddess.
For the Dior haute couture spring/summer 2024 show, Portman left the fairytale storytelling to the runway and wore a playful look that was less Cinderella, more May/December. The film star, who is on the awards show circuit representing the Todd Haynes melodrama, seems to have been channelling her ruthless character, Elizabeth, on the red carpet with commanding black dresses boasting sexy details (hello exposed bra). Taking her seat on Maria Grazia Chiuri’s front row alongside Ali Wong, Felicity Jones and Juliette Binoche, Portman was almost incognito as a brand face.
No bar jackets for Portman, just blazers worn as dresses and black platforms—the sort of low-key sexy look Elizabeth might wear to try and jazz up the indie film circuit. OK, we’re reaching, but incidentally another actor doing method dressing in Hollywood has worn that same commanding footwear this January. Rosamund Pike, who is moonlighting as Saltburn aristo Elspeth, teamed her black lace Dior couture dress with a pair of monster heels to give her “Elspeth at the funeral” look something of an edge (if that didn’t do it, the lace veil certainly did).
Adding to Portman’s new-look Miss Dior allure? Her glossy yet messy, naturally wavy hair that had the same vibe as her campaigns, in which she utters the immortal line, “And you, what would you do for love?” while in the throes of a wild romance. Natalie Portman will never be the most showy (see Rihanna, who rocked up to the show in a directional version of Dior’s famous ’50s silhouette), but there’s quiet power in knowing when to play it cool and when to pop. Her Oscars moment is in sight.
This article first appeared on British Vogue.
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