In the new movie Jackie, in limited theaters Dec. 2, Natalie Portman plays one of the most famous women of the 20th century. But her depiction of Jacqueline Kennedy, in the days following her husband’s 1963 assassination and in flashbacks to the earlier days of his brief administration, is an attempt to reveal the private person obscured by fame. Portman’s Jackie is at once grief-stricken and obsessed with legacy, deeply concerned with history as it unfolds but aware of her tendency toward vanity. It’s a nuanced and complicated performance for which the actress has already generated awards-season buzz.
Portman’s Jackie is also a physical facsimile, to the extent she can be, of the woman she’s playing. Her just-so bouffant, her blood-soaked pink suit and even the curvature of her eyebrows are an exacting approximation of the First Lady’s. These exclusive behind-the-scenes photos from the set of the Pablo Larraín drama offer an intimate look at the recreation of the early ’60s White House and its inhabitants and guests—Jackie, her children and her brother-in-law Robert F. Kennedy (Peter Sarsgaard)—from recreations of the interior of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. to the day of the slain president’s funeral.