Natalie Portman has officially responded after Jessica Simpson called her out for "shaming" comments regarding a bikini photo.
While speaking to USA Today, Portman commented on the difficulty of being a teenager who is confronted with sexualized imagery, saying, "I remember being a teenager, and there was Jessica Simpson on the cover of a magazine saying ‘I’m a virgin’ while wearing a bikini, and I was confused. Like, I don’t know what this is trying to tell me as a woman, as a girl."
Now, Portman has clarified to ET that she did not mean her statement to come across as a slight at Simpson.
"I would never intend to shame anybody and that was absolutely not my intention," Portman stated. "I was really talking about mixed media messages out there for young women and completely apologize for any hurt it may have caused because that was definitely not my intention."
"What I said was I was confused by mixed messages when I was a young girl growing up, and there are a lot of messages for how women should be, and women should be allowed to do whatever they want," she went on to say.
"It is a mistake to say anyone's name,"Portman then added. "I could have made my message without naming."
The Black Swan actress' apology comes after Simpson took to social media to call her out for what she perceived as a verbal jab.
"I was disappointed this morning when I read that I 'confused' you by wearing a bikini in a published photo taken of me when I was still a virgin in 1999," Simpson stated. "As public figures, we both know our image is not totally in our control at all times, and that the industry we work in often tries to define us and box us in."
"However, I was taught to be myself and honor the different ways all women express themselves, which is why I believed then – and I believe now – that being sexy in a bikini and being proud of my body are not synonymous with having sex," the singer added.0comments
"I have always embraced being a role model to all women to let them know that they can look however they want, wear whatever they want and have sex or not have sex with whomever they want," Simpson also wrote. "The power lies within us as individuals. I have made it my practice to not shame other women for their choices."
The former reality TV star then concluded her message by saying, "In this era of Time's Up and all the great work you have done for women, I encourage you to do the same."