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File:Jackie (2016 film).png
Theatrical release poster
Directed byPablo Larraín
Written byNoah Oppenheim
Produced by
  • Juan de Dios Larraín
  • Darren Aronofsky
  • Mickey Liddell
  • Scott Franklin
  • Ari Handel
CinematographyStéphane Fontaine
Edited bySebastián Sepúlveda
Music byMica Levi
Distributed byFox Searchlight Pictures
Release date
  • September 7, 2016 (2016-09-07) (Venice)
  • December 2, 2016 (2016-12-02) (United States)
Running time
99 minutes[1][2]
  • United States
  • Chile
  • France
Budget$9 million[3]
Box office$10.5 million[4]

Jackie is a 2016 biographical drama film directed by Pablo Larraín and written by Noah Oppenheim. The film stars Natalie Portman as the titular character, following her life after the 1963 assassination of her husband John F. Kennedy. Peter Sarsgaard, Greta Gerwig, Billy Crudup and John Hurt also star.

The film was selected to compete for the Golden Lion at the 73rd Venice International Film Festival[5] and was released in the United States on December 2, 2016, by Fox Searchlight Pictures.


The film follows Jackie Kennedy in the days when she was First Lady in the White House and her life following the assassination of her husband, President John F. Kennedy, in 1963. It focuses on Theodore H. White's Life magazine interview with the widow at Hyannis Port, Massachusetts.


  • Natalie Portman as Jackie Kennedy
  • Peter Sarsgaard as Robert F. Kennedy
  • Greta Gerwig as Nancy Tuckerman
  • Billy Crudup as Theodore H. White
  • John Hurt as Father Richard McSorley
  • Max Casella as Jack Valenti
  • Beth Grant as Lady Bird Johnson
  • Richard E. Grant as William Walton
  • Caspar Phillipson as John F. Kennedy
  • John Carroll Lynch as President Lyndon B. Johnson
  • Julie Judd as Ethel Kennedy
  • Brody and Aiden Weinberg as John F. Kennedy Jr.
  • Mathilde Ripley as Jean Kennedy Smith
  • Barbara Foliot as Pat Kennedy
  • Albain Venzo as Peter Lawford
  • David DeBoy as John Metzler
  • Patrick Hamel as Sargent Shriver
  • Frédérique Adler as Eunice Kennedy
  • Stéphane Höhn as Charles Collingwood
  • Sunnie Pelant as Caroline Kennedy
  • Sara Verhagen as Mary Barelli Gallagher
  • Georgie Glen as Rose Kennedy
  • Roland Pidoux as Pablo Casals
  • William Beaux d'Albenas as Hugh Auchincloss
  • Nicolas Guigou as James Auchincloss
  • David Friszman as Jack Brooks
  • Eric Soubelet as Benjamin Bradlee
  • Craig Sechler as Governor Connally
  • Emmanuel Herault as Robert McNamara
  • Serge Onteniente as Charles de Gaulle
  • Rebecca Compton as Nellie Connally
  • Harry Kemp as Clint Hill



The film's script, written by Noah Oppenheim, was originally conceived as an HBO miniseries and covers the "four days between John F. Kennedy's assassination and his burial, showing Jackie at both her most vulnerable and her most graceful" with Steven Spielberg set to produce the series.[6] However, Spielberg later left the project.[7]

Pablo Larraín, not typically inclined to directing biopics, was initially hesitant to direct one when he was offered the opportunity. He admitted that although he did not have any history or knowledge about John F. Kennedy's assassination, he connected with Jacqueline Kennedy.[8] Prior to directing Jackie, he had only made films centering on male protagonists rather than women. Thus, Jackie is the first film that he could approach from a woman's perspective. He grew more interested in Kennedy after learning more about her. To him, her life after the assassination "had all the elements that you need for a movie: rage, curiosity, and love."[8] Oppenheim said that the screenplay itself did not change much over the long development process, revealing, "When Pablo Larraín boarded the project, he had ideas. I wrote two or three more drafts with his guidance, but over a very condensed period of time. So while it took six years from first draft to completion, most of those six years were not active years."[9]


In April 2010, it was announced that Rachel Weisz would star in the titular role, with Darren Aronofsky set to direct and produce the film from Oppenheim's script.[10] However, both Weisz and Aronofsky dropped out after their split.[11] The same year, Steven Spielberg showed interest in helming the film.[12] Then in September 2012, without a director, Fox Searchlight Pictures started courting Natalie Portman to star in the film, as Jacqueline "Jackie" Kennedy, hoping that her participation would bring back Aronofsky,[13] although Portman's involvement was contingent on which director signed on.[14] At the 65th Berlin International Film Festival in February 2015, Pablo Larraín was approached by Aronofsky to direct the film after he was impressed by the former's The Club.[15] Larraín was skeptical and asked Aronofsky why he wanted a Chilean man who was not fond of biopics to helm the film.[8] In May 2015, Portman was confirmed to star in the film.[16] That same month, Larraín was hired to direct the film with Aronofsky working as a producer.[16] By the 2015 Cannes Film Festival, the film was officially a go.[15] The rest of the cast – Greta Gerwig and Peter Sarsgaard – were announced between May and October of the same year.[17][18]


File:Natalie Portman Cannes 2015 (cropped).jpg

Natalie Portman undertook immense research of Kennedy in preparation for her role.

Natalie Portman was approached to star in the film in September 2012 but her casting was not confirmed until May 2015.[13][16] In preparation for the role, Portman studied Jackie Kennedy extensively by watching videos of her, repeatedly watching White House tour recordings, reading books, and listening to audiotapes of her interviews.[19][20] She also read around twenty of her "pulpy" biographies, which she did not consider high literature.[21] Her primary source was the seven-part eight-and-a-half-hour Life magazine interview conducted in the early part of 1964 by Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. with Kennedy. One of three interviews she gave following her husband’s assassination, it was kept private throughout her life.[15][21][22]

Portman said she was intimidated at first,[23] and her initial knowledge of Kennedy was just a "superficial understanding of her as a fashion plate." But through playing her in the film, Portman gained a deeper understanding of the former first lady.[24] While doing her research, she found out that Kennedy had two personas in front of different people – a debutante in public but feisty behind closed doors. "When she was doing interviews, [her voice] was a lot more girly and soft, and then when you hear her talking to Schlesinger at home, you hear the ice in the glass clinking and the voice is a little deeper and her wit comes out more, so you get this real sense of the two sides."[20]

Mimicking Jackie's ranging vocals was pivotal for Portman, since Aronofsky said "conquering Kennedy's vocals was the key to the rest of the film." Portman trained with dialect coach Tanya Blumstein for this. In the beginning, Portman had difficulty with copying Kennedy's vocals especially on the first day of set when her initial delivery was too much.[25] She also said that the costumes helped her to get into character.[26]

Portman is one of many actresses that have portrayed Kennedy in cinema following Divine, Jaclyn Smith, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Roma Downey, Jill Hennessy, Joanne Whalley, Kat Steffens, Jacqueline Bisset, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Parker Posey, Blair Brown, and Katie Holmes.[14][27]


Principal photography on the film began in December 2015 in a Paris-area studio where most of the interior scenes were shot.[28] Production designer Rabasse and set decorator Melery oversaw replication of White House rooms needed for filming in the studio just outside Paris.[29] In February 2016, production moved to downtown Washington, D.C. where JFK's funeral procession scenes were filmed.[30]


Mica Levi composed the film's accompanying score.[31]


File:Pablo Larrain Natalie Portman.jpg

Director Pablo Larraín and actress Natalie Portman during the premiére of the film in Venice in 2016

The film had its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival on September 7, 2016.[32][33] The film also screened at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 11, 2016.[34][35] Shortly after, Fox Searchlight Pictures acquired U.S distribution rights to the film, and set a December 9, 2016, release.[36][37] It was later moved up a week to December 2.[38]


Box office[]

Fox Searchlight opened Jackie in a limited release in five theaters across the United States on December 2, 2016. In Los Angeles, it screened at the Arclight Hollywood and the Landmark West L.A., while in New York City, it played at AMC Lincoln Square, Cinema 1,2,3 and the Landmark Sunshine.[39] It grossed $275,000 in its opening weekend (a per-theater average of $55,000), finishing 20th at the box office.[40] The film will slowly roll-out over the following four weeks and will be in 40–45 markets in 175–225 theaters by the Christmas holiday.[39]

Critical response[]

Jackie received universal acclaim from critics, with Portman's performance being lauded. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 88%, based on 171 reviews, with an average rating of 8/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Jackie offers an alluring peek into a beloved American public figure's private world -- and an enthralling starring performance from Natalie Portman in the bargain."[41] On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating, the film holds a score of 81 out of 100, based on 49 critics, indicating "universal acclaim".[42]

David Rooney of The Hollywood Reporter gave the film a positive review writing: "Extraordinary in its piercing intimacy and lacerating in its sorrow."[43] Guy Lodge of Variety also gave the film a positive review writing : "Chilean helmer Pablo Larraín makes an extraordinary English-lingo debut with this daring, many-leveled portrait of history's favorite First Lady."[44]

Historical accuracy[]

The Dallas Morning News commentator Anna Parks criticized the film's negative portrayal of Jackie's relationship with Lyndon and Lady Bird Johnson and noted that letters, as well as a taped phone conversation between President Johnson and Jackie which occurred on December 2, 1963, showed that the former first lady and the Johnsons were cooperating well.[45][46].


Main article: List of accolades received by Jackie (2016 film)

See also[]

  • Cultural depictions of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
  • Cultural depictions of John F. Kennedy


  1. "Jackie (15)". British Board of Film Classification. November 16, 2016. Retrieved November 16, 2016.
  2. "Venezia 73". Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  3. Thompson, Anne (September 12, 2016). "How TIFF 2016 Rocked The Oscar Race: Why 'Moonlight' Glows, 'Birth' Struggles, and More Revelations". Retrieved September 12, 2016.
  4. "Jackie (2016)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved January 15, 2017.
  5. "Venice Film Festival 2016". Deadline. July 28, 2016. Retrieved July 28, 2016.
  6. Jennifer Armstrong (March 16, 2010). "Steven Spielberg selling Jackie Kennedy Onassis script". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  7. Nicole Sperling (April 14, 2010). "Exclusive: Rachel Weisz to play Jackie Kennedy". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Malina Saval (October 13, 2016). "'Jackie' Director Pablo Larrain on the Kennedy's Story: 'Rage, Curiosity, and Love'". Variety. Retrieved October 13, 2016.
  9. Christopher McKittrick (December 6, 2016). "The Different Faces of Jackie". Creative Screenwriting. Retrieved December 6, 2016.
  10. Rich, Katey (April 14, 2010). "Rachel Weisz To Play Jackie Kennedy For Darren Aronofsky". Cinema Blend. Retrieved June 15, 2016.
  11. Robinson, Joanna (May 14, 2015). "Natalie Portman Will Be the Latest Actress to Play Jackie Kennedy". Vanity Fair. Retrieved June 15, 2016.
  12. Mike Fleming Jr (September 28, 2012). "Natalie Portman Courted To Play Jackie Kennedy In Fox Searchlight Drama". Retrieved October 8, 2016. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |work= (help)
  13. 13.0 13.1 Fleming Jr, Mike (September 28, 2012). "Natalie Portman Courted To Play Jackie Kennedy In Fox Searchlight Drama". Retrieved June 15, 2016.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Joanna Robinson (May 14, 2015). "Natalie Portman Will Be the Latest Actress to Play Jackie Kennedy". Vanity Fair. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Anthony D'Alessandro (September 16, 2016). "Natalie Portman On 'Jackie': "She Took This Real Control Over Her Family's Story" – Toronto Studio". Retrieved October 8, 2016. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |work= (help)
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 Hopewell, John (May 14, 2015). "Natalie Portman to Star as Jacqueline Kennedy in New Drama (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved June 15, 2016.
  17. Kroll, Justin (October 30, 2015). "Greta Gerwig Joins Natalie Portman in 'Jackie' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved June 15, 2016.
  18. Kroll, Justin (October 28, 2015). "Peter Sarsgaard to Play Robert Kennedy Opposite Natalie Portman in 'Jackie' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved June 15, 2016.
  19. Julie Miller (September 11, 2016). "Natalie Portman on Unlocking the Mystery of Jackie Kennedy". Vanity Fair. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  20. 20.0 20.1 Jason Gurrrasio (September 14, 2016). "How Natalie Portman prepared for her Oscar-worthy performance as Jackie Kennedy". Business Insider. Retrieved October 9, 2016.
  21. 21.0 21.1 Jason Guerrasio (August 17, 2016). "Natalie Portman talks directing her first movie and why you'll never see her on social media". Business Insider. Retrieved October 9, 2016.
  22. Kate Erbland (October 13, 2016). "'Jackie': Natalie Portman Explains How She Looked Past Her Own 'Common Perceptions' for Her Lauded Role". IndieWire. Retrieved October 14, 2016.
  23. Joey Nolfi (September 11, 2016). "Natalie Portman explains the daunting task of portraying an icon in Jackie". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  24. Times Staff (September 11, 2016). "Natalie Portman on playing Jackie Kennedy: 'It was nice to approach her as a person rather than as an icon'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  25. Ashley Lee (October 13, 2016). "How Natalie Portman Adopted That "Very Particular" Voice for 'Jackie'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 14, 2016.
  26. Jennifer Drysdale (October 13, 2016). "EXCLUSIVE: Natalie Portman Admits Playing Jackie Kennedy Was 'Challenging,' Gushes About Hillary Clinton". Entertainment Tonight. Retrieved October 14, 2016.
  27. Emily Heil (September 13, 2016). "Natalie Portman may be (finally) the Jackie Kennedy fans want". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 9, 2016.
  28. Tartaglione, Nancy (December 16, 2015). "Natalie Portman As 'Jackie'; First Look As LD Entertainment & Bliss Media Board Biopic". Deadline. Retrieved December 17, 2015.
  29. Stamp, Elizabeth (December 1, 2016). "How a Designer Re-created Camelot for the New Movie Jackie". Architectural Digest. Retrieved December 3, 2016.
  30. Emily Heil (February 22, 2016). "Natalie Portman to film Kennedy funeral scene in D.C. for upcoming 'Jackie'". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 9, 2016.
  31. "Mica Levi to Score Pablo Larrain's 'Jackie'". Film Music Reporter. August 11, 2016. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  32. Ritman, Alex (July 28, 2016). "Venice Film Festival Unveils Lineup for 73rd Edition". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 28, 2016.
  33. "Jackie". Venice Film Festival. Retrieved September 7, 2016.
  34. Vlessing, Etan (August 11, 2016). "Toronto: Natalie Portman's 'Jackie' Biopic, 'Moonlight' From Brad Pitt's Plan B Join Lineup". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  35. "Jackie". Toronto International Film Festival. Retrieved September 7, 2016.
  36. Setoodeh, Ramin. "Fox Searchlight Buys 'Jackie,' As Natalie Portman Enters the Oscars Race". Variety. Retrieved September 13, 2016.
  37. Fleming Jr, Mike (September 13, 2016). "Fox Searchlight Buys Natalie Portman-Starrer 'Jackie' In Toronto; Sets Dec. 9 Release". Retrieved September 13, 2016.
  38. "New Dates & Changes". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  39. 39.0 39.1 Brian Brooks (December 2, 2016). "Natalie Portman Is First Lady in Oscar-Hopeful 'Jackie' – Specialty B.O. Preview". Retrieved December 3, 2016. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |work= (help)
  40. "'Moana' Keeps Fire Going In Chilly December Weekend; 'Manchester' & 'Jackie' Bask In Awards Season Rays".
  41. "Jackie (2016)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved December 20, 2016.
  42. "Jackie reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved December 20, 2016.
  43. Rooney, David (September 7, 2016). "'Jackie': Venice Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
  44. Lodge, Guy (September 7, 2016). "Film Review: 'Jackie'". Variety. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
  45. Film fails to show the warmth of Jackie Kennedy and Lady Bird Johnson Dallas News. December 1, 2016. Retrieved January 7, 2017.
  46. LBJ Presidential Library Retrieved January 7, 2017.

External links[]

Template:Pablo Larraín Template:Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis