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Natalie Portman Series Halts Production After Baltimore Locals Try to Extort $50K at Gunpoint

"A driver on our production crew was confronted by two men, one of whom brandished a gun"

natalie portman lady in the lake baltimore extort $50k 50,000 gunpoint
Natalie Portman, photo by Filippo Monteforte / AFP via Getty Images

    Lady in the Lake, an Apple TV+ series starring Natalie Portman and Moses Ingram, has halted production in Baltimore after a pair of reported drug dealers threatened a crew member at gunpoint and demanded $50,000 or else they would shoot someone.

    The August 26th interaction was first reported by The Baltimore Banner and then confirmed by producers in a statement to Deadline. “Friday afternoon, on the Baltimore set of our production Lady in the Lake, prior to the arrival of the cast and crew, per their call time, a driver on our production crew was confronted by two men, one of whom brandished a gun directed at our driver, and then they fled the location,” the statement read.

    The men said they would shoot someone if their demands were not met, though soon afterwards they bolted from the scene. Producers made no effort to pay them the $50,000. “We are working with the Baltimore Police Department as the investigation is ongoing. The safety and security of our crew, cast and all who work across our productions is our highest priority, and we are thankful no one was injured. Production will resume with increased security measures going forward. It has been a privilege filming Lady in the Lake in Baltimore, working with its vibrant community across many areas.”

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    No timeline has been given for production to resume.

    Lady in the Lake is based on the novel of the same name by journalist and mystery author Laura Lippman. It takes place in Baltimore in the 1960s, and follows a white housewife who aspires to be an investigative reporter (Portman) and who clashes with a Black mother and activist (Ingram) as they attempt to find the truth behind an unsolved murder.

    Portman was recently seen in Thor: Love and Thunder and will star opposite Julianne Moore in Todd Haynes’ May Decemberwhile Ingram recently threatened Ewan McGregor in Obi-Wan Kenobi.

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