Natalie Portman is clarifying her words about Jessica Simpson that caused her to clap back after she seemingly sex shamed the singer in a recent interview where she said she was “confused” as a girl when she saw the then-virgin buxom blonde’s bikini shoot.
“Thank you for your words,” Portman said in reply to Simpson on social media. “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.”
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Portman apologized for any harm she may have caused. “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.”
As Radar readers know, the two engaged in a bitter battle over social media following a chat with USA Today to discuss Portman’s upcoming role in Vox Lux where she plays pop star Celeste, in which she explained to the outlet that she has struggled with the contrast seen in the music industry and what it was trying to tell its audience.
“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. Like, I don’t know what this is trying to tell me as a woman, as a girl,” Portman said.
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On Wednesday Simpson wrote a lengthy post on social media. “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. 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. However, I was taught to be myself and honor the different ways all women express themselves, which is why I believed then – and I believe now – that being sexy in a bikini and being proud of my body are not synonymous with having sex.”
She continued, “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.”
“I have made it my practice to not shame other women for their choices. In this era of Time’s Up and all the great work you have done for women, I encourage you to do the same,” the singer concluded.
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