Who Is Moby? Natalie Portman Slams Musician's Claims They Once Dated, Calling Him 'Creepy'

Natalie Portman
Natalie Portman attends WE Day California at The Forum on April 25, 2019 in Inglewood, California. Getty

Following Moby's memoir hitting shelves earlier this month, Natalie Portman spoke out to Harper's Bazaar in an interview published Tuesday, refuting claims made in Then It Fell Apart that she and the now 53-year-old musician had briefly dated while she was a college student.

Born Richard Melville Hall, Moby began his musical career in 1978 with several underground punk rock bands before making the switch to dance music in 1989. His 1991 single "Go" brought him mainstream success, reaching No. 10 in the United Kingdom. Between 1992 and 1997, Moby garnered eight Top 10 hits on the Billboard Dance Club Songs chart, including "Move (You Make Me Feel So Good)", "Feeling So Real", and "James Bond Theme (Moby Re-Version)".

Over the course of his career, he was nominated for several Grammy Awards and is currently nominated for the GAFFA-Prisen Award for Best International Album and Best International Artist.

Musician/DJ Moby visits SiriusXM Studios on May 13, 2019 in New York City. Getty

Instead of his music making headlines, however, Moby became a trending topic Wednesday after Portman denied having ever dated him, remembering him as an "older man being creepy" toward her teenaged self. While his memoir noted that the Black Swan actress was 20 at the time of their alleged relationship, in an interview with Harper's Bazaar, Portman says she had just turned 18 when she met the musician.

An excerpt of his memoir read: "I was a bald binge drinker who lived in an apartment that smelled like mildew and old bricks and Natalie Portman was a beautiful movie star. But here she was in my dressing room, flirting with me."

"I was surprised to hear that he characterized the very short time that I knew him as dating because my recollection is a much older man being creepy with me when I just had graduated high school," Portman said Wednesday. "He said I was 20; I definitely wasn't. I was a teenager. I had just turned 18. There was no fact checking from him or his publisher – it almost feels deliberate."

"[The fact] he used this story to sell his book was very disturbing to me," she continued. "It wasn't the case. There are many factual errors and inventions. I would have liked him or his publisher to reach out to fact check."

Portman went on to say Moby's behavior at the time was "inappropriate" and detailed the "relationship" as meeting up only a "handful of times."

"I was a fan and went to one of his shows when I had just graduated," she said. "When we met after the show, he said, 'let's be friends'. He was on tour and I was working, shooting a film, so we only hung out a handful of times before I realized that this was an older man who was interested in me in a way that felt inappropriate."

Following Moby's recollection of his relationship with Portman, many commenters sided with the actress on social media, saying the musician's behavior was "predatory"–opening up another chapter within the Time's Up and MeToo movements.

"Time's Up circumvented the legal system which people have complained about, but the legal system has not been serving women for so long and there was such frustration with it," the actor told Bazaar. "It gave women the ability to say, 'We're essentially being silenced and shamed and now we're coming forward.' There's a real collective force when so many women come together. It's a shame that it requires so many of us to be heard, but the force of it has the same force of a legal statement being implemented."

Moby took to Instagram Wednesday to say that Portman statements about their past interactions "confused" him.

"I recently read a gossip piece wherein Natalie Portman said that we'd never dated. This confused me, as we did, in fact, date," Moby captioned an old photo of him and Portman. "After briefly dating in 1999 we remained friends for years. I like Natalie, and I respect her intelligence and activism. But, to be honest, I can't figure out why she would actively misrepresent the truth about our (albeit brief) involvement."

"The story as laid out in my book. Then It Fell Apart is accurate, with lots of corroborating photo evidence, etc," he added.

He concluded: "I completely respect Natalie's possible regret in dating me (to be fair, I would probably regret dating me, too), but it doesn't alter the actual facts of our brief romantic history."