It’s a mark of Australia’s cultural strength that they’ve provided so many of today’s top-line cinematic greats. Mel Gibson and Cate Blanchett, Judy Davis and Naomi Watts, Sam Neill and Russell Crowe. And, of course, there’s the woman who is the hottest of the lot, the ex-Mrs Cruise but a fine actress and Oscar-winner in her own right – Nicole Kidman.
During the first few years of her career, Nicole Kidman remained largely unknown outside of her home country of Australia. It was only when she moved to Los Angeles and started dating1 an actor named Tom Cruise that her notoriety2 began to grow, and there’s little doubt that since then she’s reached the point where her name alone can open3 a movie.
Nicole Mary Kidman was born on June 20, 1967, in Honolulu, Hawaii. Though she spent the first few years of her life living in the States, Nicole Kidman, along with her parents and baby sister, moved permanently4 to Sydney, Australia, when she was just 4 years old. Nicole Kidman’s penchant5 for the theatrical became evident6 fairly7 early on, and her inherently8 graceful nature initially9 led her to the world of ballet.
It didn’t take long for Nicole Kidman to start dabbling10 in other stage-centric11 activities, though it wasn’t until she took on a role as a sheep in a school Christmas pageant12 that she first developed in interest13 in acting. As she progressed into her teens, Nicole Kidman devoted14 virtually15 all of her spare waking moments16 to improving her skills as an actress – to such an extent17 that she dropped out of high school to pursue a career within the local film scene.
Nicole Kidman was just 16 years old when she landed18 a small role in the 1983 Australian drama Bush Christmas [Рождество в лесу], which paved the way19 for her to work steadily over the next several years (in ’83 alone she appeared in three other films). Though she had become a familiar face among Australian viewers, Nicole Kidman was itching20 to make a similar impact within North America. Her opportunity came in 1989 when she successfully auditioned for a starring role opposite Sam Neill and Billy Zane in the hit thriller Dead Calm [Мёртвый штиль], which firmly21 established her as one of Down Under’s22 most promising23 imports.
On her very next project, 1990’s racing drama Days of Thunder, Nicole Kidman found herself falling for24 costar25 Tom Cruise, and their whirlwind26 romance culminated with a Christmas Eve marriage later that year. She went on to share the screen with her A-list27 husband twice more prior to28 their 2001 divorce in the 1992 Ron Howard drama Far and Away [Далеко-далеко] and the 1999 Stanley Kubrick thriller Eyes Wide Shut [С широко закрытыми глазами] (the latter is suspected to have played a role in the disintegration29 of Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise’s marriage, as the shoot went on for three years).
Though she had spent the 1990s appearing in such box-office hits as 1993’s My Life, 1995’s Batman Forever and 1997’s The Peacemaker, Nicole Kidman’s status as a bankable30 leading lady didn’t come about until the one-two punch31 of Moulin Rouge! and The Others in 2001. She followed those hits up with roles in acclaimed dramas like 2002’s The Hours, 2003’s Dogville and 2003’s Cold Mountain, although, in recent years, her box-office appeal has started to falter32 due to33 appearances in a string of critical and financial failures (including 2005’s Bewitched [Колдунья] and 2007’s The Invasion). Her personal life fared34 far better during this time, however, as Nicole Kidman’s relationship with country singer Keith Urban led to a marriage and a child.
After other ‘07 films like Margot at the Wedding and The Golden Compass, which she appeared in alongside Daniel Craig, she worked on Australia in 2008 with fellow Aussie35 Hugh Jackman.
Her 2009 movies include Need, costarring Naomi Watts, and Nine with Kate Hudson, Daniel Day-Lewis and Penelope Cruz.
1 to date – (разг.) встречаться 2 notoriety – известность 3 to open – (зд.) обеспечить успех 4 permanently – (зд.) на постоянное место жительства 5 penchant – склонность 6 evident – очевидный 7 fairly – довольно 8 inherently – по сути 9 initially – в начале 10 to dabble – проявлять интерес 11 stage-centric – имеющий отношение с сцене 12 pageant – инсценировка 13 to develop in interest – проявлять интерес 14 to devote – посвящать 15 virtually – практически 16 waking moment – момент бодрствования 17 to such an extent – до такой степени 18 to land – (зд.) получить 19 to pave the way – прокладывать путь 20 to itch – испытывать непреодолимое желание 21 firmly – твёрдо 22 Down Under – Австралия или Новая Зеландия 23 promising – многообещающий 24 to fall for – (разг.) влюбиться 25 costar – известный актёр, занятый в фильме или спектакле совместно с другим известным актёром 26 whirlwind – бурный 27 A-list – звезда первой величины 28 prior to – до 29 disintegration – разрушение 30 bankable – прибыльный, «кассовый» 31 one-two punch – двойной удар 32 to falter – спотыкаться 33 due to – из-за 34 to fare – преуспевать 35 Aussie – австралиец