Portman forced to leave Western Wall - Israel Culture, Ynetnews

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Scene in Jerusalem

The Israeli-born Portman was chased from the Western Wall Photo: Reuters
The Israeli-born Portman was chased from the Western Wall Photo: Reuters

Portman forced to leave Western Wall

Israeli-born actress was filming kissing scene ultra-Orthodox Jews deemed improper for the holy site

By Shelly Paz
Published: 02.24.05, 14:48 / Israel Culture

Actress Natalie Portman was forced to abruptly leave the Western Wall area Tuesday when ultra-Orthodox Jews became upset over a kissing scene being filmed at the Jerusalem holy site.


Portman, who is an Oscar nominee for her supporting actress performance in the film “Closer,” was filming the scene with the Israeli actor Aki Avni, her co-star in the film "Free Zone," which is being directed by Amos Gitai.


The film is currently being shot in locations throughout the country, including the Dead Sea and Jerusalem.


The production crew came to the Western Wall on Tuesday without first obtaining permits from authorities responsible for the holy site.


Portman and Avni were being filmed kissing inside a vehicle in the area. Ultra-Orthodox nearby took notice and rushed toward them with shouts of “Immoral! Immoral!"


As a result the film crew was forced to fold up and leave the area.


Gitai denied the incident took place, but the head of the authorities for the Western Wall area confirmed that a scene violating appropriate codes of behavior was filmed without permission.


Jerusalem Police confirmed details of the event and said that the actors and production crew were asked to return to the site at a later time, after the situation had calmed down.


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