Nicole Kidman’s Two-Hour Work Schedule & Botox-Face Denials

By Bedhead in Nicole Kidman, Vanity

Rabbit Hole still with Nicole Kidman

Nicole Kidman’s latest attempt to revive her flagging acting career, Rabbit Hole, recently premiered at TIFF and is receiving fairly good reviews. Still, it sounds like awfully depressing shit — a story about a “fractured married couple” who are, inevitably, “mired in a deep valley of depression after the death of their little boy.” Now, the question remains whether Kidman’s immutable face can realistically portray such emotions; accordingly, Director John Cameron Mitchell sat down with Movieline to talk about what it was like to work with a leading lady of such caliber:

You largely cast non-professionals and unknowns in Shortbus. Now you’ve got Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart. Is there a learning curve for dealing with actors like these?
There always is; every actor has his or her needs . . . . [W]hen we started, there was a bit of, “Nicole has her schedule; you can’t just call her. She has to do this, and eventually she will arrive here for two hours.” And it’s like, “Oh, OK,” rather than, “What do you think about that?” She has a remove.

Wow.
She’s so in the public eye that she has to protect herself, and I understand that. But it’s just a little odd.

Two hours on a film set? Seriously, don’t push yourself, Nic. Next up? The obligatory “face” discussion:

Not to be mean, gossipy or catty, I swear, but this needs to addressed: Nicole Kidman’s face. As a filmgoer and a Kidman fan, I can’t help but think of how the changing appearance of her face over time affects her characters, her characterizations, and how they’re received. Was that a consideration for you as a director, especially shooting close-ups and attempting to capture expressiveness?
I didn’t really follow the EW timeline of her face. When I met her, that’s who I knew. I sort of remembered some other films. She hasn’t been under the knife. I don’t know anything about Botox, but she certainly wasn’t doing it in our film. In our film, she played the most real person — looking-wise, acting-wise — that she has since… Dogville’s an amazing performance, though I wouldn’t exactly call that quotidian. Sometimes she wears wigs because her hair gets tangly, but we said no — no wigs. It would save us time, and we’d believe this woman more. And those can sometimes add a layer, no matter how good the wig is.

This was as naked as she can be, especially considering how the character is put together. But shooting on the Red [movie camera] with soft lenses — we were worried about a hard video look — was a good match. We didn’t glam her up; she’s a beautiful woman anyway. But for the first time, she feels like she’s her age. She wasn’t afraid of the shots where she just doesn’t look good — weeping, this and that. She went all the way. Hopefully this film will kind of reduce all of that, because when you’re focusing on something like that, it gets in the way. I mean look: Mickey Rourke did way, much more, and there was a big question about Mickey Rourke’s face. So he goes off and does The Wrestler, and now that’s his face. Whatever. That’s much more extreme. He got past that by playing through it. And yeah — it’s kind of an unfortunate moment in his life that made him feel like he had to do that.

But with her, I think it’s higher standards for women; we wouldn’t be asking these questions of guys. Unless it’s Sylvester Stallone. I feel like there should have been more conversation on that face. But you’re right: They bring it on themselves if they’re going to go there.

This isn’t about gossip, either. I’m talking about in a strictly aesthetic sense. It makes a difference.
I know. People would ask me, “How’s her face?” It’s just so weird. That was just an augur of the types of films she had made, which weren’t of great quality. So what you do focus are things like that: “What is she doing?” And that just says something about her choices in the last few years, maybe.

Damn, this guy is a serious diplomat, but it’s difficult to really blame MItchell (at least, as a director-for-hire) for saving his own ass here. After all, he wants to work again in Hollywood, right? Then he must obey the Golden Rule: Thou shalt never publicly acknowledge that Kidman’s botox has seriously compromised her acting ability. Mention her diva antics? Sure, but never touch that face.



2 comments

caro

:mrgreen: maybe no botox for the movie but duck lips YES!!!!!!!

09.17.10 | 1:46 pm

[...] Nicole Kidman’s botox is outta control [...]

09.17.10 | 7:08 pm
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