Natalie Portman discusses inspiration for children's book, 'Natalie Portman's Fables'

The actress and author shares the bizarre location she chose to record the audio for her children’s book and her message to women voting in the presidential election.
7:49 | 10/21/20

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Transcript for Natalie Portman discusses inspiration for children's book, 'Natalie Portman's Fables'
In the new children's book, "Natalie portman's fables," the Oscar winner puts a modern twist on classic fairy tales and she's also bringing fantasy to life in Australia getting ready to film the next sequel to "Thor." Please welcome Natalie portman. Good morning, Natalie portman. Good morning. So nice to be with you. I don't know if I should say good morning, good evening, but you are in Australia right now preparing to shoot "Thor: Love and thunder," with Chris Hemsworth early next year. Now you're playing female "Thor." What can you tell us about that? Well, it's based off the graphic NFL. It's called "The mighty Thor" which is many people who are fans might already know, but Jane foster becomes Thor while she's having breast cancer treatment actually. So it's kind of her superpowers come through that time. Now what's it been like living in Australia with your family right now, especially during these crazy times? It's been really, really lucky. This country is just incredible. It's very, very beautiful. The people are incredibly warm, and we feel super grateful to be here. So we were talking to Jill Biden earlier today, and as a feminist and one of the founders of the time's up movement, you've said that you were happy with Joe Biden's pick of kamala Harris as his vp running mate. So let me ask you, with so much at stake in this election, what do you want to say to make sure that women show up at the polls for Biden and Harris in a couple of weeks? Well, this is super important. It's the most important election of our lives, and I don't know how much I even have to say because I think women are well aware of it. We are at such a crossroads, like, all of us are at home trying to work and take care of our kids and worry about our families being healthy and safe, and that our children are going to be socialized okay despite all of this, in the chaos and disorganization and havoc that has been showed by our president which is just not necessary in these times. So yeah. I mean, it's the election of our lives. So I'm so happy that people are so motivated. I see everyone out there going to the polls early and getting their votes in. Well, on a much lighter note, you wrote a children's book, and I cannot recommend this book enough by the way. It's become my children's favorite. It's "Natalie portman's fables" which retells classic stories in a more gender-neutral way. Now it's dedicated to your son aleph who is 9 and your daughter Amalia who is 3 years old, and you said it was inspired by your realization that you didn't want to read feminist baby books to your baby girl. Can you explain that? Well, of course, I want to be inspiring empathy and equality in my children in the way we treat all people, but I didn't want to introduce the concept that there are obstacles to girls at such a young age. She's only 3. So I wanted to just instill these values in her of caring about other people and of treating people equally, and then the classic stories I noticed were predominantly male when I kept reading the other ones that existed. So what if I took classic stories, but made the animal kingdom reflect the real world because all of the copies I had found were all male characters. Yeah. So it was an incredible experience getting to work with this beautiful illustrator who made just, like, really whimsical, fun illustrations, but then making, you know, like in "Three little pigs," one of the pigs is male, one is female, one is nonbinary, the wolf is female which we usually don't see. Yes. There's no value to gender or stereotyping. Just making it reflect the world. I love that. So you recorded the audio version of your book and I, you know, I love that because it gives me a feel for what your -- what you want me to hear, what you want me to know, and so you did it from someplace unusual and I'm almost afraid to say. What does that mean, but I'm going to go for it and say, why was it unusual? Where did you record it? Well, during pandemic times of course, we have to make do with what we have, so they asked me to have, like, the closest to, like, a padded room and I ended up in my coat closet because I needed it to be kind of -- I had to surround myself with pillows to, like, absorb the sound. It was, like, what is going on in here? I was sitting on the floor in our messy coat closet. So one thing that should really score points with your kids is your role as queen amidala in the "Star wars" prequels, but I heard you haven't shown them those movies yet. Why is that? Well, it's tricky because well, first of all, I had a boyfriend in it who is not their daddy. I have kids who are not them, and I die in the movie. I think all of those things are a little bit too much for them to process. Yeah. As like make believe. To separate that, I think they have to be a little older. They know I'm in it, and they feel that is cooler that, you know, the normal dorkiness they think of me as. That's hysterical. I think the other question I'm supposed to ask you is, you were talking about making the characters in "Fables" in your book, "Fables," to really sort of talk about the real world, what we see with people as we meet them. So you were talking about nonbinary and all of the other conversations that go along. When they start to ask you, your little ones, what do you mean, because of course, for the first couple of years, we have been speaking one way to them, and then we sort of change it up. What do you say to them? Well, I don't mean -- it doesn't explain anything in the book. It says -- it's just a use of pronouns. So there's a he, there's a she, there's a they, and when they do ask questions, I say well, there's a whole gender spectrum, you know, I don't use the word spectrum. I say there's a range of ways you can be. Some people don't feel like they're a boy or a girl, and I think they know people like that, you know, any classroom has kids that feel all different ways. Some people are girly girls. Some people are boys. Some people are in between. Yeah. Absolutely. I love that. I think that's wonderful. You know what? Come back and see us when you get back. Come out of that closet and come and spend some time with us at "The view." Thanks for hanging. Her new book "Natalie portman's fables" is out right now, and you can get it on audible which I suggest because it always helps to hear the author read

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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