Nicole Mary Kidman, AC (born 20 June 1967) is an Australian actress and film producer.
Kidman's breakthrough film role was in the 1989 thriller Dead Calm. After appearing in several films in the early 1990s, she came to worldwide recognition for her performances in the auto racing film Days of Thunder (1990), the romance Far and Away (1992), and the superhero film Batman Forever (1995). Other successful films followed in the late 1990s. Her performance in the musical Moulin Rouge! (2001) earned her a second Golden Globe Award and first Academy Award nomination for Best Actress. Kidman's performance as Virginia Woolf in the drama film The Hours (2002) received critical acclaim and earned her an Academy Award for Best Actress and a Silver Bear for Best Actress at the Berlin International Film Festival.
Kidman's other notable films include the crime comedy-drama To Die For (1995), the erotic thriller Eyes Wide Shut (1999), the horror-thriller The Others (2001), the epic war drama film Cold Mountain (2003), the drama Dogville (2003), the political thriller The Interpreter (2005), and the epic historical romantic drama Australia (2008). Her performances in the drama Birth (2004) and the thriller The Paperboy (2012) earned her Golden Globe nominations for Best Actress and Supporting Actress respectively. Her performance in the 2010 drama Rabbit Hole--which she also produced--earned Kidman further accolades, including a third Academy Award nomination for Best Actress. In 2012, she earned her first Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie for her role in the biopic Hemingway & Gellhorn.
Kidman has been a Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF since 1994. and for UNIFEM since 2006. In 2006, Kidman was made a Companion of the Order of Australia, and was the highest-paid actress in the motion picture industry in 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.
In 2015 Kidman became the brand ambassador for Etihad Airways.
Kidman was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, while her parents were temporarily in the United States on educational visas. Her father was Antony David Kidman (1938-2014), a biochemist, clinical psychologist, and author who died of a heart attack when he was in Singapore at the age of 75. 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. Kidman's ancestry includes Irish, Scottish, and English heritage.
At the time of Kidman's birth, her father was a graduate student at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He soon became a visiting fellow at the National Institute of Mental Health of the United States. Opposed to the war in Vietnam, which was causing social unrest in both Australia and the United States, Kidman's parents participated in anti-war protests while they were 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 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 says that she was first inspired to become an actress upon seeing 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."
In 1984, her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, which caused Kidman to temporarily halt her education and help provide for the family by working as a massage therapist at age seventeen. She studied at the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne, Victoria, and at the Phillip Street Theatre in Sydney, with actress and friend Naomi Watts who had attended the same high school. This was followed by attending the Australian Theatre for Young People. Here she took up drama, mime and performing in her teens, finding acting to be a refuge. Due 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 both encouragement and praise to pursue acting full-time.
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 and began gaining popularity in the mid-1980s after appearing in several film roles, including BMX Bandits, Watch the Shadows Dance, 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. She also appeared in Sesame Street.
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, playing a young doctor who falls in love with a NASCAR driver. This was Kidman's American debut and was among the highest-grossing films of the year.
In 1991, she co-starred with former classmate and friend Naomi Watts and Thandie Newton in the Australian independent film Flirting. Kidman and Watts portrayed two 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 2011), 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 appeared in Gus Van Sant's critically acclaimed To Die For, earning praise, including winning her first Golden Globe for her portrayal of murderous newscaster Suzanne Stone Maretto. Kidman next appeared in The Portrait of a Lady (1996), based on the novel the same name, alongside Barbara Hershey, John Malkovich and Mary-Louise Parker. The following year she appeared 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. The same year she appeared opposite 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 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. Subsequently, Kidman received her second Golden Globe Award, for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy, as well as other acting awards. She also received her first Academy Award nomination, for Best Actress. Also in 2001, she had a starring role in Alejandro Amenábar's Spanish horror film The Others as Grace Stewart. 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. Kidman was named the World's Most Beautiful Person by People magzine
In 2003, Kidman won critical praise for her portrayal of Virginia Woolf in Stephen Daldry's The Hours, which also featured Meryl Streep and Julianne Moore. Kidman 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, "Kidman tunnels like a ferret into the soul of a woman besieged by excruciating bouts of mental illness. As you watch her wrestle with the demon of depression, it is as if its torment has never been shown on the screen before. Directing her desperate, furious stare into the void, her eyes not really focusing, 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. 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. 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's, 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.
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.
Upcoming films include the Australian-Irish drama-thriller, Strangerland, which opened at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival to a 'rapturous' audience response to Kidman's performance and the Jason Bateman-directed The Family Fang, produced by Kidman's production company, Blossom Films. 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.
Her collaboration with Ewan McGregor on "Come What May" peaked at No. 27 in the UK Singles Chart. Later she collaborated with Robbie Williams on "Somethin' Stupid", a cover version for Williams' swing covers album Swing When You're Winning. It peaked at No. 8 in the Australian ARIAnet Singles Chart, and at No. 1 for three weeks in the UK. In 2006, while voicing a role in the animated movie Happy Feet, she provided vocals for Norma Jean's "heartsong", a slightly altered version of "Kiss" by Prince. Kidman sang in Rob Marshall's movie musical Nine.
Relationships and children:
Kidman has been married twice: previously to actor Tom Cruise, and currently to country singer Keith Urban. She has an adopted son and daughter with Cruise as well as two biological daughters with Urban. Kidman met Cruise in November 1989, while filming Days of Thunder, they were married on Christmas Eve 1990 in Telluride, Colorado. The couple adopted a daughter, Isabella Jane (born 1992), and a son, Connor Anthony (born 1995). On 5 February 2001, the couple's spokesperson announced their separation. Cruise filed for divorce two days later, and the marriage was dissolved in August of that year, with Cruise citing irreconcilable differences. In her 2007 interview with Marie Claire, Kidman noted the incorrect reporting of the ectopic pregnancy early in her marriage. "It was wrongly reported as miscarriage, by everyone who picked up the story." "So it's huge news, and it didn't happen." In the June 2006 issue of Ladies' Home Journal, she said she still loved Cruise: "He was huge; still is. To me, he was just Tom, but to everybody else, he is huge. But he was lovely to me and I loved him. I still love him." In addition, she has expressed shock about their divorce.
Prior to marrying Cruise, Kidman lived with Australian stage actor Marcus Graham in the late 1980s. In the mid-1980s, she dated her Windrider co-star Tom Burlinson, whom she lived with on and off for three years, according to biographer Andrew Morton. Kidman met her second husband, New Zealand-Australian country singer Keith Urban, at G'Day LA, an event honouring Australians, in January 2005. They married on 25 June 2006, at Cardinal Cerretti Memorial Chapel in the grounds of St Patrick's Estate, Manly in Sydney. They maintain homes in Sydney, Sutton Forest (New South Wales, Australia), Los Angeles, and Nashville (Tennessee, USA). The couple's first daughter, Sunday Rose Kidman Urban, was born in 2008, in Nashville. Kidman's father said the daughter's middle name was after Urban's late grandmother, Rose. In 2010, Kidman and Urban had their second daughter, Faith Margaret Kidman Urban, via surrogacy at Nashville's Centennial Women's Hospital. Faith's middle name is after Kidman's late grandmother.
Religious and political views:
Kidman is a Roman Catholic. She attended Mary Mackillop Chapel in North Sydney. Following criticism of The Golden Compass by Catholic leaders as anti-Catholic, Kidman told Entertainment Weekly that the Catholic Church is part of her "essence," and that her religious beliefs would prevent her from taking a role in a film she perceived was anti-Catholic. During her divorce from Tom Cruise, she stated that she did not want their children raised as Scientologists. She has been reluctant to discuss Scientology since her divorce. Kidman has donated to U.S. Democratic party candidates.
In 2014, Kidman said she had been practicing Transcendental Meditation since her early twenties.
Wealth, philanthropy and honours:
In 2002, Kidman first appeared on the Australian rich list published annually in the Business Review Weekly with an estimated net worth of A$122 million. In the 2011 published list, Kidman's wealth was estimated at A$304 million, down from A$329 million in 2010. Kidman has raised money for, and drawn attention to, disadvantaged children around the world. In 1994, she was appointed a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF, and in 2004, she was honoured as a "Citizen of the World" by the United Nations. Kidman joined the Little Tee Campaign for breast cancer care to design T-shirts or vests to raise money to fight the disease; motivated by her mother's own battle with breast cancer in 1984.
In the 2006 Australia Day Honours, Kidman was made a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) for "service to the performing arts as an acclaimed motion picture performer, to health care through contributions to improve medical treatment for women and children and advocacy for cancer research, to youth as a principal supporter of young performing artists, and to humanitarian causes in Australia and internationally." However, due to film commitments and her wedding to Urban, it was 13 April 2007 that she was presented with the honour. It was presented by the Governor-General of Australia, Major General Michael Jeffery, in a ceremony at Government House, Canberra. Kidman was appointed goodwill ambassador of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) in 2006. In this capacity, Kidman has addressed international audiences at UN events, raised awareness through the media and testified before the United States House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs to support the International Violence against Women Act. Kidman visited Kosovo in 2006 to learn about women's experiences of conflict and UNIFEM's support efforts. She is the international spokesperson for UNIFEM's Say NO - UNiTE to End Violence against Women initiative. Kidman and the UNIFEM executive director presented over five million signatures collected during the first phase of this to the UN Secretary-General on 25 November 2008.
In the beginning of 2009, Kidman appeared in a series of postage stamps featuring Australian actors. She, Geoffrey Rush, Russell Crowe and Cate Blanchett each appear twice in the series: once as themselves and once as their Academy Award-winning character. On 8 January 2010, alongside Nancy Pelosi, Joan Chen and Joe Torre, Kidman attended the ceremony to help Family Violence Prevention Fund break ground on a new international center located in the Presidio of San Francisco.
As of April 2013, Kidman's movies have grossed more than US$3 billion, with 17 movies making more than US$100 million. Kidman said that she prefers to play the role of a villain, because they are more fun.
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