Natalie Portman to direct, feature as identical twins in biopic based on columnists Esther, Pauline Friedman's rivalry

FP Staff

August 22, 2018 12:26:43 IST

Los Angeles: Actor Natalie Portman is all set to star and direct a drama based on the real-life competing advice columnist sisters, Esther and Pauline Friedman.

FILE - In this May 17, 2015 file photo, Natalie Portman poses for photographers during a photo call at the 68th international film festival, Cannes, southern France. On Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017, Natalie Portman was awarded Israel’s 2018 Genesis Prize, a $1 million recognition that is widely known as the “Jewish Nobel Prize.” Organizers of the prize announced Tuesday that they were recognizing the Oscar-winning actress for her commitment to social causes and deep connection to her Jewish and Israeli roots. (AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau, File)

Natalie Portman. AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau

The twin sisters, born in 1918 in Iowa, lived a relatively collaborative life until Esther was hired on by The Chicago Sun-Times as an advice columnist, sparking jealousy in Pauline. Pauline later got her own competing column.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, the sisters had a bitter professional rivalry but led personal lives that were equal parts competitive, jealous, successful and loving.

They used the pen names, Abigail Van Buren and Ann Landers, for their respective columns that used to feature in many newspapers across North America.

Portman, 37, will play both the sisters in the film with TV series The Affair's producer and staff writer Katie Robbins penning the script, reported Variety.
Producers of the project would be Peter Saraf and Dani Melia of Big Beach Films.

The actor, who made her directorial debut in 2015 with Israeli drama A Tale of Love and Darkness, will be next seen in music drama Vox Lux and Xavier Dolan's The Death and Life of John F Donovan.

(With inputs from Press Trust of India)

Updated Date: Aug 22, 2018 12:26 PM