I enjoyed my chat with dancer Kimberly Prosa, one of two body doubles for actress Natalie Portman in Darren Aronofsky's BLACK SWAN. The film, a psychological thriller with dazzling special effects, opens nationwide December 3.
Reports Prosa on her amazing and unexpected first-ever movie experience:
"I went to audition at an open call looking for extras to be background fill-in as dancers.
"Darren pulled me aside and said, 'You have a lot of resemblance to Natalie.'
"He took me in and interviewed me, taking a million photos from a lot of angles. I ended up doing several things on that film. I did photo doubling for her.
They were shooting my feet from the waist down. I did stunt doubling as well, fight scenes and getting pushed through mirrors, so I got pulled into different aspects.
[When Prosa's gnarly feet were shown in preview screenings of BLACK SWAN, they elicited gasps of horror (but yawns in a ballet studio). They're the result of special-effects make-up.]
Says Prosa: "Natalie took class, she studied for several months, from the waist up is her. Sarah Lane a soloist at ABT, did the heavy tricks, she did the fouéttes, but they only had her for a limited time, a couple of weeks, so I did the rest of whatever dance shots they needed."
"We filmed in New York," says the New York-based dancer, shown at left with elements on her face, ready for CGI technology.
"She [Portman] definitely put her work in. Just in a couple of months, she looked credible -- all the dancers on the set were really impressed at how well she pulled that off -- it was pretty amazing.
"It was one of the best experiences I've had in my career," Prosa concludes, her voice ringing with pride.
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Photos: courtesy Kimberly Prosa
Debra Levine writes about dance for the Los Angeles Times. She blogs on arts•meme.