23 May 2001
Kidman: "I'm Still Overwhelmed"
By Jeanne Wolf
Nicole Kidman's new film, Moulin Rouge, may have come up empty-handed at the Cannes Film Festival last weekend, but it scored a major victory at the box office: On just two screens, the musical drama grossed a spectacular $167,540, for a per-screen average of $83,770. (By comparison, the No. 1 film, Shrek, pulled in $11,806 at each theater.)
While it's too early to herald the pic a smash — the true test comes June 1 when it opens wide — it's safe to say that Kidman's decision to aggressively promote the movie has paid off so far. Still, given her recent split from Tom Cruise (and her subsequent miscarriage), the actress admits to TV Guide Online that, "Obviously I would not do interviews during this particular time in my life if I didn't have such a wonderful film to talk about. I want people to know about it."
In an effort to protect her two children, Kidman won't disclose any details of her divorce with Cruise — and she probably never will. As it is, she says, "I'm still dealing with things. I'm still overwhelmed by everything a bit. But I'm surrounded by a lot of people who I'm very close to, who've become very, very good friends. And I'm lucky, lucky to have that... You have to keep pushing through, it's important."
Ironically, "The Show Must Go On" is a constant refrain in Moulin Rouge, in which Kidman plays the beautiful and highly-desired courtesan of the famed nightclub. But the show almost came to a halt when the 33-year-old redhead broke a rib and hurt her knee during filming. "I'm embarrassed by my injuries," she giggles. "It makes you out to be such a wimp.
"I broke my rib in the rehearsal process," she explains. "[Co-star] Ewan McGregor is very proud to say that he broke it. We were doing this sort of dance sequence where I have to jump in his arms, and it was just the way he caught me. It wasn't a full break, it was a small crack as they described it. But then they put me in a corset a little too soon, and re-broke it." Her knee injury — which forced her to bow out of the upcoming David Fincher thriller, The Panic Room (she was replaced with Jodie Foster) — was a little more serious. "I was in these huge heels and I fell down the stairs and just tore the cartilage behind my kneecap. But it is getting better."
Looking back, Kidman recalls with a laugh that "when [director] Baz Luhrmann cast me he said, 'I need you to just bring the truth of the love story and sort of your gawkiness to the role. And I was like, 'My gawkiness? I'm not gawky!' But I guess it appears I can be a little un-coordinated at times." — Jeanne Wolf