Natalie Portman Explains ‘Confused’ Comment About Jessica Simpson Was About ‘Mixed Messages’ In The Media

Jessica Simpson took a swipe at Natalie Portman on Wednesday after the “Black Swan” actress said she was “confused” as a teen after seeing Simpson on the cover of a magazine in a bikini with the cover line, “I’m a virgin.”

Portman, 37, said in a recent interview with USA Today, published on Tuesday: “I remember being a teenager, and there was Jessica Simpson on the cover of a magazine saying ‘I’m a virgin’ while wearing a bikini, and I was confused.”

She added: “Like, I don’t know what this is trying to tell me as a woman, as a girl.”

On Wednesday, Portman clarified her comments to Entertainment Tonight: “I would never intend to shame anybody and that was absolutely not my intention. I was really talking about mixed media messages out there for young women and completely apologize for any hurt it may have caused because that was definitely not my intention.”

The actress further explained the context of the quote: “What I said was I was confused by mixed messages when I was a young girl growing up, and there are a lot of messages for how women should be, and women should be allowed to do whatever they want.”

And the “Vox Lux” star admitted she regrets saying Simpson’s name in her example to the newspaper. “It is a mistake to say anyone’s name,” she said. “I could have made my message without naming.”

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Meanwhile, Simpson, 38, posted a lengthy message on Instagram Wednesday directed at the star, saying: “I was disappointed this morning when I read that I ‘confused’ you by wearing a bikini in a published photo taken of me when I was still a virgin in 1999.”

She continued: “As public figures, we both know our image is not totally in our control at all times, and that the industry we work in often tries to define us and box us in.”

 

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The musician and actress then said how “being sexy in a bikini and being proud” of her body was “not synonymous with having sex.”

Simpson added: “I have always embraced being a role model to all women to let them know that they can look however they want, wear whatever they want and have sex or not have sex with whomever they want.”

“The power lies within us as individuals,” Simpson continued.

She then finished up her post by referencing Time’s Up and encouraging women “not to shame others for their choices.”

Portman replied to Simpson directly on Instagram in the comments: “I completely agree with you that a woman should be allowed to dress however she likes and behave however she likes and not be judged. I only meant to say I was confused – as a girl coming of age in the public eye around the same time – by the media’s mixed messages about how girls and women were supposed to behave. I didn’t mean to shame you and I’m sorry for any hurt my words may have caused. I have nothing but respect for your talent and your voice that you use to encourage and empower women all over the globe.”

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