August 11, 2013

Oscar-winner Natalie Portman has chosen Israeli novelist Amos Oz’s memoir A Tale of Love and Darkness as the premise for her first feature film as a director. The A-list Hollywood actress will also write and star in the film adaptation.

Oz told Reuters that Portman asked for the rights to make a film adaptation “around five or six years ago. I agreed because of my high esteem for her work. She’s an excellent actor.” He recently approved the film’s screenplay – which was part of the deal with Portman before she would begin filming.

Portman will arrive in Israel next month to scout for film locations and filming will begin in January, according to reports.

The book details Oz’s childhood in Jerusalem at the end of the British Mandate and in the state’s early years. Portman will play Oz’s mother.

A Tale of Love of Darkness is considered one of the most successful novels in Israeli literature, selling more than 1.3 million copies abroad.

No word yet on whether the film will be made in English or Hebrew. Portman, was born in Jerusalem, is fluent in Hebrew and holds joint US and Israeli citizenship.

Photo of Natalie Portman by Joe Seer /

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Jason Harris

Jason Harris

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