The life of a professional dancer is physically exhausting in its own right and possibly (or not) being haunted by supernatural forces, a la Nina (Natalie Portman) in Black Swan, only makes that career all the more complicated.

A scene from Black Swan has emerged online and while it concerns the seemingly innocuous act of costume fitting, what happens to Portman’s Nina is unsettling enough to ward you off from ever again inspecting yourself in a mirror backstage.

Black Swan begins a limited release in U.S. theaters at the beginning of December and is easily the most anticipated upcoming (arthouse) release of the year. Darren Aronofsky’s latest directorial effort has been flying high with critics since its tour around the festival circuit and has further benefited from an intriguing marketing campaign that has featured some gorgeous international artwork, a creepy TV spot and website, and even a flashy yet unnerving music video.

Now a clip from the actual film is online and it’s a simple but troubling moment that both hints at the ambiguous nature of Nina’s experiences (is it all in her mind?) and pays homage to one of the more famous shots from Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane (chances are you’ve heard of that pic).

Watch the scene from Black Swan below (courtesy of Shock Till You Drop):

Clint Mansell’s Tchaikovsky-inspired musical score for Black Swan plays but for a brief moment in this clip, but – judging by the early responses online – it’s just as hauntingly beautiful as his previous work for Aronofsky, which includes the “Lux Aeterna” theme from Requiem For A Dream and the entire soundtrack for The Fountain.

Portman is virtually a lock to receive an Oscar nomination for her turn as Nina in Black Swan, which could also land nods for both Aronofsky and possibly even Portman’s costar, Mila Kunis – for her performance as the mysterious and evocative Lily (though the lack of arthouse pics on Kunis’ acting resume makes her more of a dark horse contender for the time being).

Black Swan begins a limited release in the U.S. on December 3rd, 2010.

Source: Shock Till You Drop