On the outside, it seems like the perfect marriage that Nicole Kidman has in the new drama miniseries “The Undoing” with a respected cancer specialist (played by Hugh Grant). But when she finds out that her husband has a child with a lover, her world turns upside down. In an interview with RedaktionsNetzwerk Deutschland (RND), the 53-year-old speaks about trust, her professional plans and duets with husband Keith Urban.
Ms. Kidman, how would you handle it if something like The Undoing happened to you in real life?
I would be devastated. For me that would be the end, my life would be over.
How important is trust in a relationship?
Trust is of immense importance in our life. You have to decide for yourself whether you trust people when they tell you things. The most important question for me anyway is whether you should trust someone with unreserved trust or whether that person should prove themselves first.
Often times you want to believe your partner, even if there are many signs against it …
When your life is going well, you tend to ignore the tiny cracks that form. It’s only human that you don’t want to see some things in someone else.
It is all the more important that friends or family open your eyes. Who has been your most important advisor in your life so far?
My mother. My sister and I were very fortunate to have been raised by an incredibly intelligent woman who never smiled at herself or kept her opinion behind the scenes. She told you the truth and then showed you ways how to deal with things. She had a great mix of pragmatism and caring. You could let your feelings run free with her. But she also made it clear to me that you have the choice between looking further ahead or simply collapsing.
Is your mother the role model for how you raise your daughters yourself?
Yes. She raised two girls who have strong self-esteem. And that’s exactly what I want to pass on to my daughters.
Her father Antony was a famous psychologist …
And an incredibly kind and compassionate man. When he was alive, we had so many conversations about human behavior. He’s really helped me deal with how tough the show industry is. He saved me from breakdown a couple of times on the phone. He was just always there for me and listened to me. I appreciated him all the more because some of my friends didn’t have good fathers. And I could see the harmful effects.
They have played everything from comedy to drama, have been to musicals, TV series and plays. All that’s missing is a reality show.
(laughs) I definitely don’t want to be part of a reality show! Of course, I sometimes look at them and find them very entertaining. But just the idea of presenting myself like that – the “Urban Family Show” – by no means. The only thing I could think of would be a guest appearance. Like Brad Pitt did on a show the other day. But that was because he wanted to do a make-up artist friend a favor.
Is there something professional that you still absolutely want to do?
For me, acting is and will remain my calling. You know, I don’t even know where this creative urge comes from in me. I come from a family of academics peppered with doctors and scientists. But life is full of unpredictable curves and diversions. For me, being able to tell stories with my voice and my emotions is the greatest. On the other hand, I also use my voice to stand up for important things in life.
I’m talking about philanthropy. I have publicly supported the women’s rights movement for decades. This is very important to me. Then I have a friend who works as an oncologist at Stanford University Hospital. I take part in fundraising campaigns for the cancer department there.
Many of your Hollywood colleagues have joined campaigns to get as many Americans as possible to vote …
… which is pretty strange for me as an Australian. In our country, voting is compulsory. And why not? We fought for the law. Just like women in the United States, for example. Therefore, one should also make use of this right. Not taking the right to vote so seriously is simply incomprehensible from my point of view.
Youube already has a couple of duets with her husband Keith Urban, in which their girls sometimes even sing along. Will there be a duet album with him soon?
(laughs) No, there won’t be an album with me and Keith. But I sing a song at the beginning of the series that Keith produced with me. He has his own recording studio at home. It’s great to have a musician at hand!