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The Daily Dish Relationships

Why Is Moby Continuing to Mansplain His Relationship with Natalie Portman to the World?

Natalie Portman has strong thoughts about Moby's claims in his new memoir, Then It Fell Apart — and the singer is not backing down.

By Tamara Palmer
Moby, Natalie Portman

If you write a tell-all book that includes Natalie Portman, you might want to fact-check it with her first! The actress came out forcefully against claims made by electronic musician Moby in his new memoir Then It Fell Apart, where he alleged he dated her when she was a 20-year-old Harvard student and he was 33.

“At midnight she brought me to her dorm room and we lay down next to each other on her small bed," he wrote in an excerpt published by The Guardian. "After she fell asleep I carefully extracted myself from her arms and took a taxi back to my hotel. I wanted one thing: for me to be alone… nothing triggered my panic attacks more than getting close to a woman I cared about.”

But that's not how Portman recalls it.

“I was surprised to hear that he characterized 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 asserted to Harper's Bazaar. “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 said she thought she was becoming friends with an artist who she liked.

“I was a fan and went to one of his shows when I had just graduated,” she explained to Harper's. “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 has doubled down on the claim, posting a follow-up on Instagram, where he again insists they were dating. It's captioned: "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. 

Moby's memoir also mentions that he tried to hook up with singer Lana Del Rey when she was still an aspiring artist using her birth name, Lizzy Grant. Vulture published a telling excerpt:

During dinner she told me she was a musician so I asked, “Will you play me some of your music?”

“Sure, do you have a piano?”

“Yes, back on the second floor,” I said.

“Floors in an apartment.” She shook her head. “Moby you know you’re the man.”

“Ha, thanks,” I said.

“No, not like that. You’re a rich WASP from Connecticut and you live in a five-level penthouse. You’re ‘The Man.’ As in, ‘stick it to The Man.’ As in the person they guillotine in the revolution.”

I didn’t know if she was insulting me but I decided to take it as a compliment.

Looks like this memoir is full of juice, but there may be some pits!

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