Natalie Portman is living the dream. Gracing the pages of Marie Claire's November issue in a cleavage-baring embellished frock, the Black Swan Oscar winner can't help gushing a little over where she's at in her life, personally, professionally, and even geographically.
Being in L.A., she tells the magazine, is an experience unlike any other. "I just really really love it here. It's one of the most exciting places to be in the world right now," she says. "It's really central in terms of the arts. It feels like things are happening in L.A., you know? New York is more where art is bought than where art is made..."
Portman won't be living in L.A. for much longer, though. She and her family -- husband Benjamin Millipied and son Aleph, 2 -- are currently preparing for an overseas move to Paris, France, where Millipied will take over as the new director of the Paris Opera Ballet in September 2014. The move took Marie Claire's cover girl by surprise at first, but she feels "lucky" to have such exciting opportunities.
"When Ben asked me if I wanted to go to Paris, I freaked," she confesses. "Everyone dreams of living in Paris."
The Israeli-born star also opens up to the mag about her parents, Shelley and Avner Hershlag. "They made me feel that they would drop anything at any time to help me," she says. "I never felt like there was anything more important than me. Which I know can probably create an a--hole, too. It gives you a deep sense of security and safety to feel that your parents will love you no matter what."
One not-so-great thing about her childhood? "I grew up around a lot of snobbism about what was important and what was serious, and I really reject that," she says. That explains her varied resume, which includes roles in artsy films like The Darjeeling Limited, as well as blockbusters like Thor: The Dark World.
The latter, a sequel to 2011's Thor, is set to be released later this year -- and Portman can't say enough good things about its star, Chris Hemsworth. "Chris is, like, one of the greatest people in Hollywood," she gushes of her costar, Liam Hemsworth's older brother. "He's the kind of actor who's so charismatic, he must be tired when he goes home."
She has her own admirers, too, of course. And for the most part, "people are really cool," she tells Marie Claire. The one exception? "I try and stay away from drunk people -- that's when they start getting rude and aggressive, like, 'Why did you suck in that movie?'"