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'Black Swan' and 'The Wrestler' Both Spawned From One Idea

by
August 31, 2010
Source: MTV

Darren Aronofsky - Black Swan

But how? I know what you're thinking - this is just a bit too wild to imagine, but you've got to hear the full story. MTV caught up with director Darren Aronofsky before leaving on his worldwide film festival trip (starting in Venice this week) for his latest feature, Black Swan, starring Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis. They talked about how he's "always considered [The Wrestler and Black Swan] companion pieces," and he told a story about, "at one point, way before I made The Wrestler, I was actually developing a project that was about a love affair between a ballet dancer and a wrestler, and then it kind of split off into two movies."

Of course, you're wondering where exactly the connection comes into play between these two films, because obviously professional wrestling and ballet dancing couldn't be more unlike each other, right? Not exactly.

"They are really connected and people will see the connections. It's funny, because wrestling some consider the lowest art — if they would even call it art — and ballet some people consider the highest art. But what was amazing to me was how similar the performers in both of these worlds are. They both make incredible use of their bodies to express themselves."

Aronofsky jokes that, "I guess my dream is that some art theater will play the films as a double feature some day." I'm sure the New Beverly in Hollywood is already planning that! In case you've already forgotten, The Wrestler was Aronofsky's last film, which got Mickey Rourke an Oscar nom last year. And with Black Swan, apparently it's as much Portman's film as it is Aronofsky's: "One of the best things about [it] is the casting of Natalie. She took the part and ran with it. I don't know if when I was working with the writers we were consciously channeling Natalie or Natalie somehow transformed herself to the part, but they grew together."

It goes without saying that Black Swan (watch the trailer) is one of my own most highly anticipated movies this year and I can't wait to see it at one of the upcoming festivals that it will be playing at. I'm a huge fan of Darren Aronofsky as well and it's considerably fascinating to watch his career over the years, especially with The Fountain and his choices after that. We just heard about his potential involvement with the Wolverine sequel yesterday, but I'm hoping he goes with something a little more unique and exciting than a superhero project next. I'm sure he's still got plenty of other brilliant ideas that he can work into a feature on his own.

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  • Mark
    Rourke didn't win the Oscar for The Wrestler. Sean Penn won for Milk.
  • will
    mark, i think alex already knew that, he just playing with us.
  • Iron Knight
    Mark speaks the truth. Rourke didn't win the Oscar. He did won the Golden Globe though, I think.
  • http://www.firstshowing.net Alex Billington
    Yea, what #2 said, just playing with you guys. :) The Wrestler should have won some Oscars, but it didn't, which is a shame.
  • graffiti bandit
    "I know what you're thinking - this is just way too crazy to believe, but you've got to hear the full story." Oh, wow. so crazy! I'll try to contain my excitement!
  • http://www.firstshowing.net Alex Billington
    ^ Oh come on, they're completely different, it's a bit hard to believe at first until you hear what Aronofsky has to say... Always picking on EVERY last word I write!
  • graffiti bandit
    Haha... call me a jerk, but I can't help it. I hate to come off as cruel but your enthusiam for movies sometimes makes you an easy target. It's all in good fun Alex.
  • Xerxex
    Alex ignore the smart ass comments. movie enthusiam is a damn good thing.
  • Richie G
    I heard Aronofsky was the original choice to direct the batman reboot 'n that he was connected to some robo cop project that didn't materialize. maybe he is destined to do a comic book movie Alex! I vote for something a lil less orthodox like " Superman Red Sun"
  • Daniel felts
    Rourke totally deserved that Oscar! And this does seem a bit far-fetch'd.
  • http://www.c-r-u-x.de c-r-u-x
    Actually this was the first thing I had in mind when I heard about Black Swan. The basic theme seems to be dedication to one's art to the point of self-abandonment and The Wrestler shares that theme. I think it's an interesting choice to make a more emotional film about the more simple natured wrestler and a more intellectual film about the more sophisticated ballet dancer whereas both kind of struggle with similar problems. There seems to be a difference between Ram's problem of "his best days are behind him" and Nina's insecurity and striving for perfection but still the movies do have many things in common. Can't wait for this film, Aronofsky is my hero! :)

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