Every Best Actress Oscar comes with its curse, and with all due respect to Sandra Bullock and Halle Berry, Natalie Portman's scandal seems to have arrived in record time.
And, in keeping with tradition, it comes courtesy of one of the leading men in her life. But not (phew!) baby daddy and hubby-to-be Benjamin Millipied.
Instead, this headline-grabber comes at the hands of (until this week, anyway) fashionista favorite, former Christian Dior head designer John Galliano. That's right, folks. As of this morning, he's been axed.
But first, let's recap: last week, the British haute couturier was suspended from Dior after he was accused of launching into a verbally abusive and anti-Semitic tirade against a French couple he just happened to be sitting next to at a Paris bar (lowlights include telling the woman, "Dirty Jewish face...you should be dead," and the man, "f--king Asian bastard, I will kill you."
Incidentally, for what it's worth, the woman in question wasn't even Jewish.
Dior quickly put out a statement stating they have a "zero-tolerance policy regarding anti-Semitism and racism" and that Galliano wouldn't return to work (if at all) until after the police investigation into the altercation was complete.
Then, as if that weren't enough of a problem for the fashion house, over the weekend video surfaced of Galliano in a separate incident in which the designer can be heard stating, "I love Hitler!" and telling a woman her family "would be f--king gassed."
So how does Natalie Portman fit into all this?
Well, she is the newest and brightest face to align itself with Dior, and thus Galliano, as she's the spokeswoman for their Miss Dior Cherie fragrance (if you caught even a segment of the Oscars, you no doubt caught an ad ).
Despite being under contract, Portman quite pointedly wore Rodarte, not Dior to the podium on Sunday night (Nicole Kidman, on the other hand, did wear a Galliano creation ), though she waited until the video surfaced to release a statement of her own. And she did not hold back.
"I am deeply shocked and disgusted by the video of John Galliano's comments that surfaced today," she said in a statement issued last night. "In light of this video, and as an individual who is proud to be Jewish, I will not be associated with Mr. Galliano in any way. I hope at the very least, these terrible comments remind us to reflect and act upon combating these still-existing prejudices that are the opposite of all that is beautiful."
It's not known how Portman's contract with Dior may be affected, but it's worth noting that she did not disavow any association with the fashion house, simply with its head designer. Which, as it happens, isn't such a problem after all, since Dior apparently felt the exact same way and, as of this morning, cut all ties with the onetime fashion favorite.
"I condemn most firmly the statements made by John Galliano which are total contradiction with the essential values that have always been defended by the House of Christian Dior," President and CEO Sidney Toledano said in a brief statement released today.
"Today, because of the particularly odious nature of the behavior and words of John Galliano in a video made public this Monday, the Christian Dior house has decided to lay him off immediately and has begun firing procedures against him."
Galliano, who also has a signature brand released through Dior, had been at the house since 1996. A Galliano-conceived runway show is scheduled to take place in Paris on Friday as planned. Albeit no doubt with a few less celebrities sitting in the front row.