Graceful Nicole Kidman | Sunday Observer

Graceful Nicole Kidman

28 March, 2021

Australian-American actress and producer Nicole Kidman made her film debut in the Australian drama Bush Christmas in 1983. Four years later, she starred in the television miniseries Bangkok Hilton , for which she received the AACTA Award for Best Lead Actress in a Television Drama. Kidman’s breakthrough role was as a married woman trapped on a yacht with a murderer in the 1989 thriller Dead Calm. She followed this with her Hollywood debut opposite Tom Cruise in Tony Scott’s auto-racing film Days of Thunder (1990). Her role as a homicidal weather forecaster in Gus Van Sant’s crime comedy-drama To Die For garnered Kidman a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Comedy or Musical in 1996. She worked with Cruise again on Stanley Kubrick’s erotic thriller Eyes Wide Shut in 1999.

Kidman played a courtesan in Baz Luhrmann’s 2001 musical Moulin Rouge!, for which she received her second Golden Globe Award and her first nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress. In the same year, Kidman appeared in the horror-thriller The Others which garnered her a nomination for the BAFTA Award for Best Actress. For her role as writer Virginia Woolf in the drama The Hours (2002) she became the first Australian to win the Academy Award for Best Actress. In 2003, Kidman starred in Lars von Trier’s Dogville, the drama The Human Stain, and the epic war drama Cold Mountain. The following year, she appeared in the sci-fi comedy film The Stepford Wives (2004), and the drama Birth (2004). Four years later, Kidman reunited with Luhrmann on the historical drama Australia. In 2010, she starred in the drama Rabbit Hole for which she received another Academy Award for Best Actress nomination.

In 2012, Kidman played novelist Martha Gellhorn in the HBO biopic Hemingway and Gellhorn (2012), for which she received a Primetime Emmy nomination. She played actress and princess Grace Kelly in the biopic Grace of Monaco (2014) and starred as an evil taxidermist in the comedy Paddington (2014). For her supporting acting performance in the 2016 biographical drama Lion, she received a fourth Oscar nomination. For producing and starring in the HBO drama series Big Little Lies (2017–2019), Kidman won another Golden Globe, a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress and a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Limited Series. Kidman recently starred in the HBO psychological thriller miniseries The Undoing (2020).

Early Life

Nicole Mary Kidman was born on 20 June 1967 in Honolulu, Hawaii, while her Australian parents were temporarily in the United States on student visas. Her mother, Janelle Ann (née Glenny), is a nursing instructor who edited her husband’s books and was a member of the Women’s Electoral Lobby; her father, Antony Kidman, was a biochemist, clinical psychologist and author. Kidman has Irish and Scottish ancestry.

Being born in Hawaii, she was given the Hawaiian name Hōkūlani, meaning ‘heavenly star.’ The inspiration came from a baby elephant born around the same time at the Honolulu Zoo.

When Kidman was born, her father was a graduate student at the University of Hawai at Mānoa. He became a visiting fellow at the National Institute of Mental Health of the United States. Opposed to the war in Vietnam, Kidman’s parents participated in anti-war protests while living in Washington, D.C. The family returned to Australia when Kidman was four and her mother now lives on Sydney’s North Shore. Kidman has a younger sister, Antonia Kidman, a journalist and TV presenter.

Kidman grew up in Sydney and attended Lane Cove Public School and North Sydney Girls’ High School. She was enrolled in ballet at three and showed her natural talent for acting in her primary and high school years. She has said she first aspired to become an actress upon watching Margaret Hamilton’s performance as the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz. Kidman has revealed that she was timid as a child, saying, “I am very shy – really shy – I even had a stutter as a kid, which I slowly got over, but I still regress into that shyness. So, I don’t like walking into a crowded restaurant by myself; I don’t like going to a party by myself.”

She initially studied at the Phillip Street Theatre in Sydney, alongside Naomi Watts who had attended the same high school. She also attended the Australian Theatre for Young People. Here she took up drama, mime and performing in her teens, finding acting to be a refuge. Owing to her fair skin and naturally red hair, the Australian sun forced the young Kidman to rehearse in halls of the theatre. A regular at the Phillip Street Theatre, she received praise and encouragement to pursue acting full time.

Upcoming projects

Kidman will star in and serve as executive producer on three television series. She will first star in the Hulu miniseries Nine Perfect Strangers based on the novel of the same name by Liane Moriarty which is currently in production in Australia. Furthermore, Kidman will star in the Amazon Prime Video thriller miniseries Pretty Things based on the upcoming novel of the same name by Janelle Brown as well as the Amazon Prime Video family drama series Things I Know To Be True based on the Australian play of the same name. Unlike Nine Perfect Strangers and Pretty Things, Things I Know To Be True is envisioned as an ongoing series with multiple seasons rather than a miniseries.

Kidman will also serve as an executive producer for the television series The Expatriates for Amazon Prime Video. In January 2021, Kidman and Javier Bardem signed on to play legendary Hollywood couple Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz in Amazon Studios and Aaron Sorkin’s Being the Ricardos.