Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Welcome Back To The Park: The First Trailer For 'Jurassic World' Is Here Welcome Back To The Park: The First Trailer For 'Jurassic World' Is Here New Character And Plot Details Emerge For 'True Detective' Season 2 As More Cast Members Confirmed New Character And Plot Details Emerge For 'True Detective' Season 2 As More Cast Members Confirmed James Gunn Says Shared Universe Model Is "Flawed," Plus Listen To "Awesome Mixtape Volume Zero" For 'Guardians' James Gunn Says Shared Universe Model Is "Flawed," Plus Listen To "Awesome Mixtape Volume Zero" For 'Guardians' 'Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens' Trailer Hits Theaters This Friday 'Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens' Trailer Hits Theaters This Friday Christian Bale Admits He Was Initially "Jealous" When Ben Affleck Was Cast As Batman Christian Bale Admits He Was Initially "Jealous" When Ben Affleck Was Cast As Batman Watch: First Trailer For Thomas Vinterberg's 'Far From The Madding Crowd' Starring Carey Mulligan Watch: First Trailer For Thomas Vinterberg's 'Far From The Madding Crowd' Starring Carey Mulligan Watch: Zac Efron Talks About His Masturbation Techniques In 'The Interview' Segment With James Franco Watch: Zac Efron Talks About His Masturbation Techniques In 'The Interview' Segment With James Franco First Look Images: Patrick Stewart As A Neo-Nazi In 'Blue Ruin' Director Jeremy Saulnier's 'Green Room' & More First Look Images: Patrick Stewart As A Neo-Nazi In 'Blue Ruin' Director Jeremy Saulnier's 'Green Room' & More Watch: Footage From "Sick," Unreleased Marilyn Manson Video, Directed By Eli Roth & Featuring Lana Del Rey Watch: Footage From "Sick," Unreleased Marilyn Manson Video, Directed By Eli Roth & Featuring Lana Del Rey R.I.P. Mike Nichols (1931-2014) R.I.P. Mike Nichols (1931-2014) Christopher Nolan Talks 'Interstellar' Twist And Enigmatic Ending Christopher Nolan Talks 'Interstellar' Twist And Enigmatic Ending Review: Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' Starring Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway & More Review: Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' Starring Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway & More Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... SXSW Review: Spierig Brothers 'Predestination'  Starring Ethan Hawke SXSW Review: Spierig Brothers 'Predestination' Starring Ethan Hawke From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

"It's Like A Love Affair": Nicole Kidman Talks Working with Stanley Kubrick, Lars Von Trier & More At The New York Film Festival

The Playlist By Rodrigo Perez | The Playlist October 5, 2012 at 4:52PM

On Tuesday, Nicole Kidman was in Paris playing Grace Kelly in the upcoming biopic “Grace of Monaco.” Hours later she was on a stage in New York, being feted by the New York Film Festival in a Gala career retrospective and conversation. "Life's a dream," she marveled.
9
Nicole Kidman

On Tuesday, Nicole Kidman was in Paris playing Grace Kelly in the upcoming biopic “Grace of Monaco.” Hours later she was on a stage in New York, being feted by the New York Film Festival in a Gala career retrospective and conversation. "Life's a dream," she marveled.

Kidman may be one of the biggest stars in the world, but celeb factor aside, it’s sometimes easy to forget that she’s a tremendous actor with an affinity for taking on difficult and challenging roles that other A-listers might normally turn down. What these roles could mean to her career doesn't even occur to Kidman, which may be best represented, at least recently, by her outrageous and oversexed turn as a seductive vamp in Lee Daniels' pulpy and swampy thriller "The Paperboy." At Wednesday night's New York Film Festival Gala tribute, the Film Society put on a dazzling sizzle reel of the Australian actress’ work that only served to remind just how bold some of her choices have been and how electric she can be in them. Think of Grace in "Dogville" who, in the film's climax tells her ruthless gangster father to burn down the small town she just left and to ensure the children are killed first. Or Suzanne Stone, the chilling, sociopathic would-be news anchor in "To Die For."

Auteurs understand that the Academy Award-winning actress is much more than just a marquee name. She's worked with Stanley Kubrick, Lars von Trier, Gus Van Sant, Jane Campion, Baz Luhrmann, and Jonathan Glazer in "Birth" -- a hauntingly good psychological thriller that NYFF program director Richard Peña called one of the most underrated films of the last twenty years (we can’t agree more).

"I know the feeling of polarizing films, that make people angry and uncomfortable and I'm very comfortable with that."

An unnerving drama about a woman who becomes convinced that a 10-year-old boy is the reincarnation of her dead husband, Kidman said that movie was overlooked and made headlines for all the wrong reasons. “It created a lot of controversy because of a bathtub scene [with me] and a 10-year-old boy. But I never saw the film that way,” she said. “It’s fascinating when choose roles how you perceive them and how they’re perceived on the outside.”

Having also delivered fantastic performances with Alejandro Amenábar ("The Others") and John Cameron Mitchell ("Rabbit Hole" for which she earned her third Oscar nomination), when asked what she looked for in director she said, a filmmaker that she feels connected to, but not necessarily safe with. Someone who can trigger emotions in her she may not be aware she’s possessing at the moment.

“It's a relationship. It's like a love affair in a way because you have to be completely devoted to someone in that time,” she said. “The one thread runs through them: they're obsessives, usually.” Having worked with the late Stanley Kubrick on “Eyes Wide Shut” (his last picture, completed just before his sudden death), Peña was curious what it was like working with that elusive American master.

“Everyone said to me, ‘Oh my god, he’s crazy and reclusive,' ” she said. “I saw Stanley as normal so I don’t know what that says about me. But I didn’t feel like the way he approached the world was odd. He was a great teacher, I found him to be a philosopher. I found him to have some unusual traits, but he was extraordinary and not at all crazy.”

Nicole Kidman Eyes Wide Shut

When Kidman first met Kubrick she was nervous and worried the film she and Cruise were going to make (“Eyes Wide Shut”) would never actually happen because of the filmmaker’s notorious habit of investing years into a picture’s development, but never actually making it. Rehearsals went on for six months, but eventually it was bliss for her. "And we weren't even rehearsing, we were just sort of hanging out and talking,” she explained. “But for me, this is how I work, so I thought, 'This is fantastic.' It was the same with the film. I didn’t care if this went on for two, three, four years, because it was like being around a professor of life, not just cinema.”

In retrospect, Kidman said the first time she met him she thought he was frail. “And if I were more intuitive I would have realized that he was not well.”

"That was one of the worst things that happened in my film career life," she said of Kubrick's unexpected death the night after the film was screened for Cruise and Kidman. The actress said she had meant to call him to congratulate him that evening, but it was getting late, so she decided to wait until the morning. She then awoke to a fateful call to tell her that Kubrick had passed away that night in his sleep. "It's one of my great regrets that I didn’t call him that night," she said.

This article is related to: Nicole Kidman, New York Film Festival , Stanley Kubrick, Lars von Trier, The Paperboy


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates