Moby has responded after Natalie Portman denied the pair dated in the late ’90s.
The musician had recounted taking the actor for a drink and, later, kissing her while visiting her at Harvard in his new memoir, Then It Fell Apart. Portman refuted claims that she had had a romantic relationship with the star, saying she found it “disturbing” that false stories were being used to promote the book.
Now, Moby has responded to Portman’s comments in an Instagram post. “I recently read a gossip piece wherein Natalie Portman said that we’d never dated,” he captioned an old photo of the pair. “This confused me, as we did, in fact, date. And after briefly dating in 1999 we remained friends for years.”
He continued: “I like Natalie, and I respect her intelligence and activism. But, to be honest, I can’t figure out why she would actively misrepresent the truth about our(albeit brief)involvement. The story as laid out in my book Then It Fell Apart is accurate, with lots of corroborating photo evidence, etc.”
The musician added the caveat that he “completely respect[ed]” her “possible regret” about dating him, saying he would probably regret dating himself too.
Portman released a statement about Moby’s anecdote yesterday (May 21), saying: “I was surprised to hear that he characterised the very short time that I knew him as dating because my recollection is a much older man being creepy with me when I just had graduated high school.
“He said I was 20; I definitely wasn’t. I was a teenager. I had just turned 18. There was no fact checking from him or his publisher – it almost feels deliberate. That he used this story to sell his book was very disturbing to me. It wasn’t the case. There are many factual errors and inventions. I would have liked him or his publisher to reach out to fact check.”
She continued: “I was a fan and went to one of his shows when I had just graduated. When we met after the show, he said, ‘let’s be friends.’ He was on tour and I was working, shooting a film, so we only hung out a handful of times before I realised that this was an older man who was interested in me in a way that felt inappropriate.”
- Read more: Pop is Not A Dirty Word: Natalie Portman’s new film paints a monstrous picture of the pop industry – but how true is it in 2019?
Moby’s recollection is different. In his book, he writes: “We had just finished a show in Austin, playing to four hundred and fifty people at a venue that held five hundred. I walked to the backstage door, sure that this was a misunderstanding or a joke, but there was Natalie Portman, patiently waiting. She gazed up at me with black eyes and said, ‘Hi.’
“I was a bald binge drinker who lived in an apartment that smelled like mildew and old bricks, and Natalie Portman was a beautiful movie star. But here she was in my dressing room, flirting with me.”
He references another encounter after the 1999 MTV Video Music Awards: “After the show Natalie appeared on the balcony where my turn-tables were set up. She was wearing a perfectly fitted beige dress and looked disconcertingly like Audrey Hepburn. ‘What do you think of my suit?’ I asked, smiling nervously.”
“The paparazzi knew my name. I’d never been photographed by paparazzi. No one had ever yelled my name before, unless they were mad at me. I wanted to stand there and soak up the flashes, but Natalie took my hand and led me into the hotel. I walked to the bar and ordered two vodka and sodas, one for each of us. ‘Oh, I don’t drink,’ she said, scanning the room – which, in turn, was scanning us.”
A later story details a period in 1999 when Portman was attending Harvard in Boston: “I took a taxi to Cambridge to meet Natalie. We held hands and wandered around Harvard, kissing under the centuries-old oak trees. At midnight she brought me to her dorm room and we lay down next to each other on her small bed. After she fell asleep I carefully extracted myself from her arms and took a taxi back to my hotel.”
Moby writes about other acquaintances in his memoir including claims that he dated Lizzy Grant aka a pre-fame Lana Del Rey.
“She was beautiful, smart, and charming; making plans to meet up with her was both what I wanted to do and what my new therapist had told me to do,” he wrote.
The same book also saw him claiming that he once rubbed his penis on Donald Trump at a New York party.