In American musician Moby's new memoir, Then It Fell Apart, the singer claimed that he "tried to be Natalie [Portman]’s boyfriend" for a few weeks when she was 20, and he was 33, but it didn't work out because she met someone else.
He claimed the two had met backstage at a concert in Austin, Texas, and during their "romance" they went to parties in New York City and spent a night together at Harvard University, where Portman was studying. But Portman herself is denying any romantic relationship ever happened between them. In an interview with Harper's Bazaar UK, she said that she and Moby were only friends briefly, he was "interested in me in a way that felt inappropriate," and that she was 18, not 20, when she met him.
“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,” Portman said. “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.”
Portman then described how she remembered their relationship: “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 realized that this was an older man who was interested in me in a way that felt inappropriate."
Moby responded to Portman's denial on his Instagram today, maintaining they did date and sharing a photo from one time they hung out. He wrote: "I recently read a gossip piece wherein Natalie Portman said that we’d never dated. This confused me, as we did, in fact, date. And after briefly dating in 1999 we remained friends for years. 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. Thanks, Moby."
He added, "Ps I completely respect Natalie’s possible regret in dating me (to be fair, I would probably regret dating me, too), but it doesn’t alter the actual facts of our brief romantic history."