Natalie Portman dishes to Marie Claire on pot, Sean Penn and being a muse

Natalie Portman’s latest film, “Brothers,” which opens this weekend, puts her in the volatile midst of a love triangle with two brothers. Earlier this year, and for the first time in her career, Portman was caught in a scandalous charade—a rumored make-out with a married Sean Penn—and naturally she denied it. Now, the Israeli-born star admits to Marie Claire that she and Penn are “friends.”

“He’s obviously someone I’m friends with,” Portman told the magazine. “I mean, not ‘hey, wassup?’ friends, but we were all on the [Cannes 2008] jury together—Alfonso [Cuarón] and Marjane [Satrapi]—and we had a really great time, and then…It was one of those things where you’re like, ‘Oh, my God! I’m that person who’s caught in this shitty rumor brigade.’ You can’t win. You don’t say anything and everyone’s like, ‘It’s true.’ You say something, and you’re keeping the story alive. It’s bad, bad news.”

Portman also tells the magazine, “I didn’t touch pot till I was in my 20s” and laments her lack of partying through high school. But don’t cry for her Argentina—if she missed out on high school activities, it was because she was already a successful actress, traveling the world instead.

According to the magazine:

She got to spend three months in France when she was 11, shooting The Professional, and on her days off her mother would take her to Monet’s house in Giverny and encourage her to come home and paint a version of what she’d seen. When she traveled to Japan for the premiere of The Professional, her parents insisted on a week off to explore the country.

In fact, the mag attributes Portman’s “remarkable steadiness” to her involved parents—her father, an Israeli fertility doctor, and her mother, an American artist.

When it comes to her career, Portman told the mag she prefers working with a diversity of artists instead of say, one director, who tries to mold her career. She isn’t into “museship” she says, not like her colleague and sister heeb Scarlett Johansson, whose wiles have inspired Woody Allen over and over again.

Portman recently wrapped the medieval drug comedy “Your Highness” and will star in Darren Aronofsky’s upcoming “Black Swan” (in which she has an “intense sex scene” with actress Mila Kunis, reports Access Hollywood) and after that, she’s lined up the blockbuster-style Marvel comic book adaptation “Thor.”

“Brothers” hits theaters December 4.