In The Social Network, Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) models Facebook on Harvard’s legendary final clubs, private groups made up of some of the school’s most privileged students. But the clubs are as secretive as they are exclusive, which meant researching them was no easy task for screenwriter Aaron Sorkin. Luckily, he got a hand from one of the school’s most famous alums: Natalie Portman. The star studied at Harvard from 1999-2003 and dated a member of the famous Porcellian Club — and she couldn’t wait to tell Sorkin all about it.
“Natalie Portman got in touch with me when she heard that I was doing this to say, ‘Listen…come over for dinner and I’ll tell you some stories,'” Sorkin said to a group of Harvard students at a sneak preview screening last week. “I would’ve come over for dinner under any circumstances. But that was really helpful.”
Portman also gets a tongue-in-cheek reference in the movie itself, when one character mentions that Zuckerberg became the hottest thing on a campus that included Nobel Laureates, Pulitzer Prizer winners, future Olympians, and a movie star.
For more on The Social Network, pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, on stands Oct. 1. To watch Dave Karger’s video chat with the stars and screenwriter (part 1 embedded below), go to EW.com/socialnetworkvideo.
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EW Review: ‘The Social Network’