Film & TV

Case Study: “Black Swan”

Natalie Portman

Lesson time 07:28 min

In this case study, Natalie reveals how she prepared for her role in “Black Swan” as a ballerina losing her grip on reality, which included training with a ballet instructor for months.

Natalie Portman
Teaches Acting
Oscar-winning actor Natalie Portman shares the techniques at the heart of her acting process—and teaches you how to tackle your next role.
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Make every role extraordinary

Natalie Portman began acting professionally at 12 and won an Oscar before she turned 30. As a self-taught actor, she uses personal techniques to create compelling, complex characters. In her first-ever acting class, Natalie shows how empathy is at the core of every great performance, how to bring real-life details into every role, and how to build your own creative process. Get ready for your breakout performance.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

This class has helped me restore confidence in myself that I can accomplish my vision for my own art pieces and that I have a better understanding of what acting is.

What a great class! Natalie was so real and authentic. I have learned so much from her. She makes the process approachable and gives excellent insight!

I've been a fan of Natalie since she was a kid. I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to hear the secrets to her amazing talent! Beautifully delivered!

I learn to create a character in all point views. Now I have an excellent material to create unexpected characters.


Dax L.

This is a good lesson because it reminds me that we should also be re-watching black swan, Natalie Portman took her acting to a new level when she performed in it.

Stanley K.

With my character Troy from 3 kings. He has 3 different parts of him. He is dad, soldier, and one point he he is a POW. On thing I noticed he is dad and soldier the whole time and a POW only for a few scenes. He wants the gold for his family so he is selfish for his family. On the set of the documentary I was on my character had to shoot a giant 100 mm prop gun that used to be a Chinese gun. It still had wadding come out the tip. I had to shoot it over the cast and make sure it did not go to low. The director said it could still injure or kill someone. The wadding shot over a 1/4 mile away. He said if hits tree it could break it. I really used my knowledge of fighting scenes from college classes, hunting (science then I really do not hunt, had change of heart) and martial arts. I wish I had some conversations with soldiers to prep. This lesson is giving so much to think about. I want to work a more dramatic role. I am going to try to speed through and work a more dramatic one and go through again. Really helpful class. Thank you!

A fellow student

Very informative, both the physical and mental state of a character from what i see makes a performance whole, if not it just not interesting enough.

Matthew B.

Great Movie Natalie !! Seen at least 6 times before most recent watch. Got quite aroused on a Saturday afternoon. Completing the lessons.

Joshua L.

I'm gladd i didntpay 90 for a class but for the year mainly focused on music. but characters can justify anywhere in lfie. plus At a young age i always wanted to pursue in acting and now that I got a home studio I can not just focus only on music but also acting. Thank you for these master classes yes I am spending money but damn it is money damn well spent.