HBO has decided to cancel The Days of Abandonment. The cable network pulled the film when its star, Natalie Portman was forced to exit the project due to “unforeseen personal reasons.”
Specific details surrounding Natalie Portman’s decision to leave the role were not immediately available. As per The Hollywood Reporter, representatives for the actress and producer declined to comment further. The Days of Abandonment was due to start filming soon in Sydney after receiving a $3.4 million grant from local officials.
“Natalie Portman has stepped down from HBO Films’ Days of Abandonment before the start of filming,” the cable network said in a statement. “Unfortunately, the production will not move forward. We are very sorry we won’t be able to bring this beautiful story to the screen with our talented writer/director and cast. We send our sincere thanks to our cast, producers, and crew for all their passion and hard work.”
The Natalie Portman starrer was based on the novel of the same name by Elena Ferrante (of My Brilliant Friend fame). The screen adaptation was written and directed by Maggie Betts, with Natalie Portman and her Mountain A Films serving as producer alongside Maven Screen Media, Len Amato’s Crash & Salvage, and Fandango. Ferrante also served as an executive producer.
The Days of Abandonment follows Tess (Natalie Portman), a woman who abandoned her dreams of a more stable home life. But when she is abandoned by her husband, Tess’s world is thrown off its axis. The story is described as a visceral, no-holds-barred journey into the mind of a woman in crisis that confronts the norms of motherhood and female identity as Tess traverses the darkest reaches of her psyche. The cast also included Rafe Spall (Trying) as Tess’ husband and Mary-Louise Parker (Weeds) as a mysterious woman who encourages Tess to examine her own identity.
Luckily, Natalie Portman will still appear in Thor: Love and Thunder. The film is the latest installment in the Thor franchise and is intended to be a direct sequel to 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok. The film will mark the return of Portman’s Jane Foster, a character who has been absent from the Marvel Cinematic Universe since 2013’s Thor: The Dark World.
Although plot details remain scarce, Thor: Love and Thunder is reportedly based on Jason Aaron’s run on The Mighty Thor in which Jane Foster takes up the mantle and powers of Thor – even though she has cancer. The film may also incorporate elements of Marvel’s 2014 Original Sin storyline, which explains how Thor lost his powers.
According to comic book lore, the God of Thunder became unworthy of wielding Mjolnir after learning a secret from Nick Fury. Although Thor initially attempts to reclaim the hammer, he eventually relinquishes the name and role after seeing Jane wield its power.
Additionally, set images have shown Thor hanging out with his Guardians of the Galaxy pals, which means that they’ve maintained their relationship after the events of Avengers: Infinity War. Natalie Portman was also spotted during filming and looked quite hero-like on set.
Starring alongside Chris Hemsworth as Thor and Natalie Portman as Jane Foster are Tessa Thompson, Chris Pratt, Jaimie Alexander, Pom Klementieff, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, Sean Gunn, and Jeff Goldblum. Academy Award winner Christian Bale will make his Marvel debut as Gorr the God Butcher. Russell Crowe also is confirmed to have a cameo appearance as Zeus, the King of the Olympians.
Directed by Taika Waititi from a screenplay he co-wrote with Jennifer Kaytin Robinson, Thor: Love and Thunder is set for release on May 6, 2022.