Darren Aronofsky Credits 6th Grade Teacher As Inspiration Behind 'Noah'
Noah sailed to the top of the box office this weekend, reigning in a whopping $44 million!
But would you believe the idea to make the epic blockbuster had its beginning when movie director Darren Aronofsky was in the sixth grade?
Vera Fried was Aronosky’s sixth grade English teacher, 32 years ago at The Mark Twain School for the Gifted and Talented in Brooklyn, New York. She gave him an assignment to write a poem about peace, and he decided to write the story of Noah.
His poem said: “A poem by Darren Aronofsky
January 13, 1982
Evil was in the world
The laughing crowd
Left the foolish man at his ark
Filled with animals”
That talented sixth grader went on to direct Black Swan for which Natalie Portman won a Best Actress Oscar.
But the dream of one day making an epic movie about Noah stayed with him all through those years. When he finally got the green light from Paramount Pictures, Aronofsky remembered the teacher who inspired him.
He tracked her down in Boynton Beach, Florida, where she is retired. Aronofsky wanted his favorite teacher to be a part of his success.
Fried told INSIDE EDITION, “I opened my email, ‘Would you like to be in the movie?’ So, I took the biggest print I could find, I am not great with computers and said ‘Yes!’”
Watch More Of Vera Fried's Interview
In the film, she plays a one-eyed hag who tries to get on board the ark. She even got to act opposite Russell Crowe.
Fried explained, "You want to see my part?" She then acted out the role saying her lines, "You! You!" Smiling, she then said, "They paid me to say that."
She was a special guest at the New York premiere last week. She wore pink, which is her favorite color, and found herself at the age of 79 in the midst of paparazzi frenzy.
Fried said, “They all call me 'Vera,’ except Darren, he calls me ‘Mrs. Fried,’ because I was his teacher.”
So, here's to Vera Fried, a memorable teacher who inspired a gifted student who grew up to become a gifted moviemaker.
She said, “Man, it feels so good!”