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Nicole Kidman Bio
Nicole Kidman (born June 20, 1967) is an Australian actress, producer, and occasional singer. She is the recipient of multiple awards, including an Academy Award, two Primetime Emmy Awards, five Golden Globe Awards, and the Silver Bear for Best Actress.
Kidman began her acting career in Australia with the 1983 film Bush Christmas. She was a lead in BMX Bandits also in 1983. Her breakthrough came in 1989 with the thriller Dead Calm and the television miniseries Bangkok Hilton. In 1990, she made her Hollywood debut in the racing film Days of Thunder, opposite Tom Cruise. She went on to achieve wide recognition with leading roles in the romantic drama Far and Away (1992), the superhero film Batman Forever (1995), the crime comedy-drama To Die For (1995), for which she won a Golden Globe Award, and the erotic thriller Eyes Wide Shut (1999). She received two consecutive Academy Award for Best Actress nominations for playing a courtesan in the musical Moulin Rouge! (2001) and the writer Virginia Woolf in the drama film The Hours (2002); she won the award for the latter, and received Golden Globes for both films.
Kidman continued to star in commercially successful films, including the horror-thriller The Others (2001) and the epic war drama film Cold Mountain (2003), as she achieved critical acclaim for roles in independent films, including the dramas Dogville (2003), Birth (2004), Rabbit Hole (2010), for which she received a third Best Actress Oscar nomination, and the thriller The Paperboy (2012). Following a period of critical and commercial failures, Kidman earned a fourth Oscar nomination for playing a troubled mother in the biopic Lion (2016). She returned to television in 2017 with an acclaimed performance as a victim of domestic abuse in the HBO series Big Little Lies, for which she won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress.
Kidman has been a Goodwill ambassador for UNICEF since 1994 and for UNIFEM since 2006. In 2006, Kidman was made a Companion in the Order of Australia and was the highest-paid actress in the motion picture industry for that year. As a result of being born to Australian parents in Hawaii, Kidman has dual citizenship in Australia and the United States. Kidman founded and owns the production company Blossom Films. Following her divorce from actor Tom Cruise, Kidman has been married to singer Keith Urban since 2006.
1983–1994: Career beginnings
In 1983, aged 16, Kidman made her film debut in a remake of the Australian holiday season favourite Bush Christmas. By the end of 1983, she had a supporting role in the television series Five Mile Creek. In 1984, her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, which caused Kidman to halt her acting work temporarily while she studied massage so she could help her mother with physical therapy. She began gaining popularity in the mid-1980s after appearing in several film roles, including BMX Bandits (1983), Watch the Shadows Dance (1987 aka Nightmaster), and the romantic comedy Windrider (1986), which earned Kidman attention due to her racy scenes. Also during the decade, she appeared in several Australian productions, including the soap opera A Country Practice and the miniseries Vietnam (1986). She also made guest appearances on Australian television programs and TV movies.
In 1988, Kidman appeared in Emerald City, based on the play of the same name. The Australian film earned her an Australian Film Institute for Best Supporting Actress. Kidman next starred with Sam Neill in Dead Calm (1989) as Rae Ingram, playing the wife of a naval officer. The thriller brought Kidman to international recognition; Variety commented: “Throughout the film, Kidman is excellent. She gives the character of Rae real tenacity and energy.” Meanwhile, critic Roger Ebert noted the excellent chemistry between the leads, stating, “Kidman and Zane do generate real, palpable hatred in their scenes together.” She followed that up with the Australian miniseries Bangkok Hilton. She next moved on to star alongside her then-boyfriend and future husband, Tom Cruise, in the 1990 auto racing film Days of Thunder, as a young doctor who falls in love with a NASCAR driver. It is Kidman’s American debut and was among the highest-grossing films of the year.
In 1991, she co-starred with Thandie Newton and former classmate Naomi Watts in the Australian independent film Flirting. They portrayed high school girls in this coming of age story, which won the Australian Film Institute Award for Best Film. That same year, her work in the film Billy Bathgate earned Kidman her first Golden Globe Award nomination, for Best Supporting Actress. The New York Times, in its film review, called her “a beauty with, it seems, a sense of humor”. The following year, she and Cruise re-teamed for Ron Howard’s Irish epic Far and Away (1992), which was a modest critical and commercial success. In 1993, she starred in the thriller Malice opposite Alec Baldwin and the drama My Life opposite Michael Keaton.
1995–2003: Worldwide recognition
In 1995, Kidman appeared in her highest-grossing live-action film (as of 2018), playing Dr. Chase Meridian, the damsel in distress, in the superhero film Batman Forever, opposite Val Kilmer as the film’s title character. The same year Kidman starred in Gus Van Sant’s critically acclaimed dark comedy To Die For, in which she played the murderous newcaster Suzanne Stone. Of Kidman’s Golden Globe award-winning performance, Mick LaSalle of the San Francisco Chronicle said “[she] brings to the role layers of meaning, intention and impulse. Telling her story in close-up – as she does throughout the film – Kidman lets you see the calculation, the wheels turning, the transparent efforts to charm that succeed in charming all the same.” Kidman next appeared in The Portrait of a Lady (1996), based on the novel of the same name, alongside Barbara Hershey, John Malkovich, and Mary-Louise Parker. The following year, she starred in the action-thriller The Peacemaker (1997) as White House nuclear expert Dr. Julia Kelly, opposite George Clooney. The film grossed $110,000,000 worldwide. In 1998, she co-starred with Sandra Bullock in the poorly received fantasy Practical Magic as a modern-day witch. Kidman returned to her work on stage the same year in the David Hare play The Blue Room, which opened in London.
In 1999, Kidman reunited with then husband, Tom Cruise, to portray a married couple in Eyes Wide Shut, the final film of director Stanley Kubrick. The film was subject to censorship controversies due to the explicit nature of its sex scenes. The film received further attention following Kubrick’s death shortly before its release. After brief hiatus and a highly publicized divorce from Cruise, Kidman returned to the screen to play a mail-order bride in the British-American drama Birthday Girl. In 2001, Kidman played the cabaret actress and courtesan Satine in Baz Luhrmann’s musical Moulin Rouge!, opposite Ewan McGregor. Her performance and her singing received positive reviews; Paul Clinton of CNN.com called it her best work since To Die For, and wrote “[she] is smoldering and stunning as Satine. She moves with total confidence throughout the film […] Kidman seems to specialize in “ice queen” characters, but with Satine she allows herself to thaw, just a bit.” Subsequently, Kidman received her second Golden Globe Award, for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy, as well as many other acting awards and nominations. She also received her first Academy Award nomination, for Best Actress.
Also in 2001, she had a starring role in Alejandro Amenábar’s horror film The Others as Grace Stewart, a mother living in the Channel Islands during World War II who suspects her house is haunted. Grossing over $210,947,037 worldwide, the film also earned several Goya Awards award nominations, including a Best Actress nomination for Kidman. She received her second BAFTA and fifth Golden Globe nominations. Roger Ebert commented that “Alejandro Amenábar has the patience to create a languorous, dreamy atmosphere, and Nicole Kidman succeeds in convincing us that she is a normal person in a disturbing situation and not just a standard-issue horror movie hysteric.” Kidman was named the World’s Most Beautiful Person by People magazine
In 2002, Kidman won critical praise for her portrayal of Virginia Woolf in Stephen Daldry’s The Hours, which stars Meryl Streep and Julianne Moore. Kidman famously wore prosthetics that were applied to her nose making her almost unrecognisable playing the author during her time in 1920s England, and her bouts with depression and mental illness while trying to write her novel, Mrs. Dalloway. The film earned positive notices and several nominations, including for an Academy Award for Best Picture. The New York Times wrote that, “Ms. Kidman, in a performance of astounding bravery, evokes the savage inner war waged by a brilliant mind against a system of faulty wiring that transmits a searing, crazy static into her brain”. Kidman won numerous critics’ awards, including her first BAFTA, third Golden Globe, and the Academy Award for Best Actress. As the first Australian actress to win an Academy Award, Kidman made a teary acceptance speech about the importance of art, even during times of war, saying, “Why do you come to the Academy Awards when the world is in such turmoil? Because art is important. And because you believe in what you do and you want to honour that, and it is a tradition that needs to be upheld.”
Following her Oscar win, Kidman appeared in three very different films in 2003. The first, a leading role in Dogville, by Danish director Lars von Trier, was an experimental film set on a bare soundstage. Though the film divided critics in the United States, Kidman still earned praise for her performance. Peter Travers of Rolling Stones magazine stated “Kidman gives the most emotionally bruising performance of her career in Dogville, a movie that never met a cliche it didn’t stomp on.” The second was an adaptation of Philip Roth’s novel The Human Stain, opposite Anthony Hopkins. Her third film was Anthony Minghella’s war drama Cold Mountain. Kidman appeared opposite Jude Law and Renée Zellweger, playing Southerner Ada Monroe, who is in love with Law’s character and separated by the Civil War. TIME magazine wrote, “Kidman takes strength from Ada’s plight and grows steadily, literally luminous. Her sculptural pallor gives way to warm radiance in the firelight”. The film garnered several award nominations and wins for its actors; Kidman received her sixth Golden Globe nomination at the 61st Golden Globe Awards for Best Actress.
2004–2009: Continued success
In 2004 she appeared in the film Birth, which received controversy over a scene in which Kidman shares a bath with her co-star, 10-year-old Cameron Bright. At a press conference at the Venice Film Festival, Kidman addressed the controversy saying, “It wasn’t that I wanted to make a film where I kiss a 10-year-old boy. I wanted to make a film where you understand love”. Kidman earned her seventh Golden Globe nomination, for Best Actress – Motion Picture Drama. That same year she appeared in the black comedy-science-fiction film The Stepford Wives, a remake of the 1975 film of the same name. Kidman appeared in the lead role as Joanna Eberhart, a successful producer. The film, directed by Frank Oz, was critically panned and a commercial failure. The following year, Kidman appeared opposite Sean Penn in the Sydney Pollack thriller The Interpreter, playing UN translator Silvia Broome. Also that year, she starred in Bewitched, based on the 1960s TV sitcom of the same name, opposite Will Ferrell. Both Kidman and Ferrell earned that year’s Razzie Award for “Worst Screen Couple”. Neither film fared well in the United States, with box office sales falling well short of the production costs, but both films performed well internationally.
In conjunction with her success in the film industry, Kidman became the face of the Chanel No. 5 perfume brand. She starred in a campaign of television and print ads with Rodrigo Santoro, directed by Moulin Rouge! director Baz Luhrmann, to promote the fragrance during the holiday seasons of 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2008. The three-minute commercial produced for Chanel No. 5 made Kidman the record holder for the most money paid per minute to an actor after she reportedly earned US$12million for the three-minute advert. During this time, Kidman was also listed as the 45th Most Powerful Celebrity on the 2005 Forbes Celebrity 100 List. She made a reported US$14.5 million in 2004–2005. On People magazine’s list of 2005’s highest-paid actresses, Kidman was second behind Julia Roberts, with US$16–17 million per-film price tag. Nintendo in 2007 announced that Kidman would be the new face of Nintendo’s advertising campaign for the Nintendo DS game More Brain Training in its European market.
Kidman portrayed photographer Diane Arbus in the biography Fur (2006), opposite Robert Downey, Jr.. Both Kidman and Downey Jr. received praise for their performances. She also lent her voice to the animated film Happy Feet (2006), which grossed over US$384 million worldwide. In 2007, she starred in the science-fiction movie The Invasion directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel, a remake of the 1956 Invasion of the Body Snatchers that proved a critical and commercial failure. She also played opposite Jennifer Jason Leigh and Jack Black in Noah Baumbach’s comedy-drama Margot at the Wedding, which earned Kidman a Satellite Award nomination for Best Actress – Musical or Comedy. She then starred in the fantasy-adventure, The Golden Compass (2007), playing the villainous Marisa Coulter.
In 2008, she reunited with Moulin Rouge! director Baz Luhrmann in the Australian period film Australia, set in the remote Northern Territory during the Japanese attack on Darwin during World War II. Kidman played opposite Hugh Jackman as an Englishwoman feeling overwhelmed by the continent. The acting was praised and the movie was a box office success worldwide. Kidman was originally set to star in the post-World War II German drama, The Reader, working with previous collaborators Sydney Pollack and Anthony Minghella, but due to her pregnancy prior to filming she had to back out. The role went to Kate Winslet, who ultimately won the Oscar for Best Actress, which Kidman presented to her during the 81st Academy Awards. Kidman appeared in the 2009 Rob Marshall musical Nine, portraying the Federico Fellini-like character’s muse, Claudia Jenssen. She was featured alongside fellow Oscar winners Daniel Day-Lewis, Judi Dench, Marion Cotillard, Penélope Cruz and Sophia Loren. Kidman, whose screen time was brief compared to the other actresses, performed the musical number “Unusual Way” alongside Day-Lewis. The film received several Golden Globe and Academy Award nominations, and earned Kidman a fourth Screen Actors Guild Award nomination, as part of the Outstanding Cast.
2010–2015: Independent films and biopics
In 2010, she starred with Aaron Eckhart in the film adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play Rabbit Hole, for which she vacated her role in the Woody Allen picture You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger. Her work on Rabbit Hole earned her critical acclaim, and received nominations for the Academy Awards, Golden Globe Awards, and Screen Actors Guild Awards, Kidman also produced this film. She lent her voice to a promotional video that Australia used to support its bid to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup. TV Guide reported in 2008 that Kidman will star in The Danish Girl, a film adaptation of the novel of the same name, playing Lili Elbe, the world’s first postoperative transsexual. Screen Daily reported that shooting would begin in Germany in July 2011. However the project has been delayed following the exit of the director, Lasse Hallström and Kidman’s co-star Rachel Weisz. In 2009, Variety said that she would produce and star in a film adaptation of the Chris Cleave novel Little Bee, in association with BBC Films.
In June 2010, TV Guide announced that Kidman and Clive Owen will star in an HBO film about Ernest Hemingway and his relationship with Martha Gellhorn. entitled Hemingway & Gellhorn. The film, directed by Philip Kaufman, began shooting in March 2011, with an air date scheduled for 2012. She also starred alongside Nicolas Cage in director Joel Schumacher’s action-thriller Trespass, with the stars playing a married couple taken hostage. On 17 September 2010, ContactMusic. com said Kidman would return to Broadway to portray Alexandra Del Lago in David Cromer’s revival of Tennessee Williams’ Sweet Bird of Youth, with Scott Rudin producing. On 30 August 2011, Cromer spoke to The New York Times and explained that the production would not meet its original fall 2011 revival date but that it remains an active project.
In June 2011, Kidman was cast in Lee Daniels’ adaptation of the Pete Dexter novel, The Paperboy; she began filming on the thriller on 1 August 2011, and The Paperboy was released in 2012. In the film, she portrayed death row groupie Charlotte Bless, and performed sex scenes that she claims not to have remembered until seeing the finished film. “I was like okay, so that’s what I did,” she said. The film competed in the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, and Kidman’s performance drew critical acclaim and among nominations for the SAG and the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress, gave Kidman her second Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actress and her tenth nomination overall. In 2012, Kidman’s audiobook recording of Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse was released at Audible.com. Kidman also co-starred in Park Chan-wook’s Stoker (2013) to positive critical response and a Saturn Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. In April 2013 she was selected as a member of the main competition jury at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.
In 2014, Kidman starred in the biopic, Grace of Monaco in the title role that chronicles the 1962 crisis, in which Charles de Gaulle blockaded the tiny principality, angered by Monaco’s status as a tax haven for wealthy French subjects and Kelly’s contemplating a Hollywood return to star in Alfred Hitchcock’s Marnie. Opening out of competition at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival, the film received largely negative reviews. Kidman also starred in two films with Colin Firth, the first, the British–Australian historical drama, The Railway Man in which Kidman played officer’s wife Patti Lomax received positive critical reviews. Katherine Monk of the Montreal Gazette said of Kidman’s performance, “It’s a truly masterful piece of acting that transcends Teplitzky’s store-bought framing, but it’s Kidman who delivers the biggest surprise: For the first time since her eyebrows turned into solid marble arches, the Australian Oscar winner is truly terrific”. The second, the British thriller film Before I Go To Sleep drew positive critical response of Kidman’s performance, as Christine Lucas, a car crash survivor with brain damage. Kidman also appeared in the family film Paddington (2014) as a villain.
On 23 January, she starred in the Australian–Irish drama-thriller Strangerland, which opened at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival to a “rapturous” audience response to Kidman’s performance. Kidman also co-starred in the Jason Bateman-directed The Family Fang, produced by Kidman’s production company, Blossom Films, which premiered at the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival. Other projects include the biographical drama Queen of the Desert, with Kidman portraying the lead role of traveller, writer, archaeologist, explorer, cartographer and political officer Gertrude Bell and Genius alongside Colin Firth and Guy Pearce. Kidman played a lead role in the 2015 thriller Secret in Their Eyes, directed by Billy Ray and co-starring Julia Roberts and Chiwetel Ejiofor. After more than 15 years, Kidman returned to the West End in the UK premiere of Photograph 51 at the Noël Coward Theatre. She starred as British scientist Rosalind Franklin in the production from 5 September to 21 November 2015, directed by Michael Grandage. The play focuses on Franklin’s role in the discovery of the structure of DNA. Kidman and the play earned “glowing reviews.” Her return to the West End has been hailed a success, especially after having won an acting award for her role in Photograph 51.
In 2016, Kidman’s performance in Lion earned rave reviews, as well as nominations for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, her fourth nomination overall, the Critics Choice for Best Supporting Actress, the Screen Actors Guild for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role, the BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, a win in the same category at the Hollywood Film Awards as well as her third Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actress, and her eleventh nomination overall. Kidman portrayed Sue Brierly, the adoptive mother of Saroo, an Indian boy who was separated from his birth family, a role she felt connected to as she herself is the mother of adopted children. Richard Roeper of The Chicago Sun-Times felt that “Kidman gives a powerful and moving performance as Saroo’s adoptive mother, who loves her son with every molecule of her being but comes to understand his quest. It’s as good as anything she’s done in the last decade.”
In 2017, Kidman returned to television in the seven-part miniseries adaptation of the Liane Moriarty bestseller Big Little Lies, which premiered on HBO. She produced the miniseries along with her co-star, Reese Witherspoon, and the show’s director, Jean-Marc Vallée. She plays Celeste Wright, a former lawyer and housewife, who is concealing her abusive relationship with her younger husband, played by Alexander Skarsgård. Kidman has garnered critical acclaim for her performance, with Matthew Jacobs of The Huffington Post stating that she “delivered a career-defining performance.” Ann Hornaday of The Washington Post wrote that “Kidman belongs in the pantheon of great actresses.” She has received a nomination from the Television Critics Association and won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie for her performance, as well as winning the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Limited Series as a producer. She went on to win a Golden Globe and SAG Award for her role.
She then played Martha Farnsworth, the headmistress of an all-girls school during the Civil War, in Sofia Coppola’s drama The Beguiled, an adaptation of the novel written by Thomas P. Cullinan, which premiered at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival, competing for the Palme d’Or. The film received positive reviews, as did Kidman’s performance, with Katie Walsh of Tribune News Service noting “Nicole Kidman is particularly, unsurprisingly excellent in her performance as the steely Miss Martha. She is controlled and in control, unflappable. Her genteel manners and femininity coexist easily with her toughness.” Kidman had two other films premiere at the festival, the science-fiction romantic comedy How to Talk to Girls at Parties, reuniting her with director John Cameron Mitchell, and the psychological thriller The Killing of a Sacred Deer, directed by Yorgos Lanthimos, which also competed for the Palme d’Or. Also in 2017, Kidman played a supporting role in the television series Top of the Lake: China Girl.
Kidman is set to portray Queen Atlanna, the mother of the title character, in the Warner Bros. film Aquaman. She will also star alongside Bryan Cranston and Kevin Hart in The Upside, a re-make of the 2011 French comedy The Intouchables. She is also set to star in the upcoming animated film, The Guardian Brothers, alongside Meryl Streep, Mel Brooks, Edward Norton, and Dan Fogler. She will be guest starring in the fifth season of the VH1 action crime television series Hopeless Fountain Kingdom, with Michael Fassbender and Bryce Dallas Howard.
Nicole Kidman (age: 52) is an Australian actress known for Dead Calm, Batman Forever, To Die For, Eyes Wide Shut, Moulin Rouge!, The Hours, The Others, Cold Mountain, Dogville, Rabbit Hole, The Paperboy, Big Little Lies and Aquaman.