Check out letters from those who agreed with us, and those who didn't on Natalie Portman, ''Star Wars: Episode I,'' and more

By EW Staff
Updated May 19, 2000 at 04:00 AM EDT

Mail from our readers

So much for the awkward teen years. Natalie Portman has beauty, brains, and box office clout, not to mention more than a few (very enthusiastic) admirers: ”Oh, my Goddess!” writes Jerry Durham of Galveston, Tex. ”On behalf of every male in the world, thank you so very much.” Another grateful male is Rick Hunter of Los Angeles: ”Forget Queen Amidala, this girl is going to conquer the world. Could you tell me where the line begins for Natalie’s personal slave?” As for the Friends cast’s salary negotiations, readers weren’t buying their financial woes. Says Chris L. Weppler of Jeffersonville, Ind.: ”I’d love to see how these Friends would live on what I make a week!”

All Hail the Queen
Natalie Portman is by far the most talented young star today, and thankfully, also has the most promising career. And I would like to thank you for portraying the mature side of adolescence. As a teenager myself, I detest being put into groups with the throngs of Christina Aguilera and Ricky Martin fans. We’re not all like that! It’s nice to finally see a non-teenybopper get some recognition.
Greg Baird
San Francisco

I was having a bad day until I received the issue of EW with Natalie Portman on the cover. While I completely respect her decision not to pose nude, I am, quite frankly, a bit disappointed. Keep putting rad hotties on the cover! Not only is Natalie beautiful, she’s an amazing actress, and extremely smart.
Kirby Yau
San Diego

Bringin’ Up the Rear
This will be overheard at a dinner party five years from now: ”Sisqo, I’d like you to meet Sir Mix-a-Lot, Vanilla Ice, and Gerardo. I think you’ll find you all have something in common!”
Mike Johnson
Woodbridge, N.J.

Unresolved ”Wars”
Thank you for clearing up some of the smaller details in Star Wars: Episode I. Now, if you could only answer the real questions: Why do the Jedi just happen to carry underwater breathing apparatuses? Why does Obi-Wan not seem to recognize R2-D2 in Episode IV? Why does the Jedi Council not sense the Sith on Coruscant or Naboo?
Bob Mihocik
Westlake, Ohio

You all have got to leave Jar Jar, and, by extension, George Lucas, alone. Have you people never seen Star Wars? Luke Skywalker was a callow youth in the first one, an angst-filled adolescent in Empire, and finally an ass kicker in Jedi. You don’t think Jar Jar is going to follow the same character arc? I predict that by the time a fully fleshed-out Jar Jar appears in Episode III, all the folks screaming ”Jar Jar must die!” will be yelling ”Why have you killed our beloved Jar Jar?!” If the last 20 years have proved anything, it’s that Lucas knows what he’s doing.
Larry Young
San Francisco

  • ”Friends” in Greed
  • I am so sad after reading the ”Friends” article. Those poor people. Can you imagine only making a measly $125,000 an episode? How do they cope? I hope the negotiations go well for them so they can start making some real money. Those six beautiful people deserve at least $1 million per episode. After all they really do work hard. Oh, jeez, hours each day in makeup and hair…ohhhh…how do they do it?
  • Wally Brown
  • Dayton, Nev.

Pantera for Kids
In the ”Parents’ Guide” to music, Lois Alter Mark dismisses the latest Pantera CD, Reinventing the Steel, and maintains that the only good thing about the disc is that ”teens will eventually outgrow it.” She goes on to find musical merit in the recent offerings of industry clones ‘N Sync and Faith Hill. In defense of Pantera, a wholly original and relevant heavy metal band, I’d like to point out that the heavy metal genre has survived many musical trends and is not going away anytime soon. By the way, ‘N Sync blasted at high volume will cause as much hearing damage as Pantera.
Kenneth Mansfield
Evansville, Ind.

”Ship” Wrecked
E. Annie Proulx’s The Shipping News is one of the finest little books to come along in the last 10 years. I was hoping that the film too would be something special. It seems, however, that Hollywood has been blinded by Oscar’s golden glow [by casting Kevin Spacey]. It was clear from page 1 that subtle Philip Seymour Hoffman was the one and only man to fill Quoyle’s clunky shoes.
Jeremy M. Kemp

Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace is not yet available on DVD.
My Name Is Joe is the R&B singer’s third album.