Written by Amy Beecham
Following a recent interview, the actor called out “sexist” questioning about her ex-husband, Tom Cruise.
Nicole Kidman is, rightfully, considered one of Hollywood’s most accomplished actors. With an Oscar, multiple Emmys, a Bafta and Golden Globes under her belt, from performances in everything from Big Little Lies to The Hours, she’s had an illustrious and varied career across film and television.
So, when there’s so much about her work to discuss, why is it that one particular part of her personal life is brought up time and time again? We’re of course referring to her previous marriage to Tom Cruise, which ended in 2001.
In the 1990s, Cruise and Kidman were indeed an It couple, gracing red carpets and posing for paparazzi shots. The pair married in 1990 and adopted two children together, before separating over 20 years ago.
But despite this, it seems their reportedly tumultuous relationship (who can forget those images of Kidman literally skipping in the street the day their divorce was finalised) is still a matter of interest, much to the actor’s dismay.
In a recent interview, where Kidman discussed her role as comedian Lucille Ball in the upcoming film Being The Ricardos, she opened up about the volatile partnership at the heart of the story, between Lucille and her husband Arnaz (played by Javier Bardem).
“It’s about a creative and romantic relationship that doesn’t work out. But from it come some extraordinary things. And I love that. I love that it’s not a happy ending,” she told the Guardian.
“This film says you can make an extraordinary relationship thrive and leave remnants of it that exist forever. Yeah, that’s really gorgeous. You can’t make people behave how you want them to, and sometimes you’re going to fall in love with someone who isn’t going to be the person you spend the rest of your life with. And I think that’s all very relatable. You may have kids with them. You may not, but they were very much in love.”
It is then that, as the interviewer themselves notes, Kidman is asked “with exquisite care” if this was her way of talking about ex-husband Cruise?
And rightfully, she called out the questioning in a very refreshing way.
“Oh, my god, no, no. Absolutely not. No. I mean, that’s, honestly, so long ago that that isn’t in this equation. So no,” she responded.
The interviewer noted that her response was “angry” as she continued:“And I would ask not to be pigeonholed that way, either. It feels to me almost sexist, because I’m not sure anyone would say that to a man. And at some point, you go, ‘Give me my life. In its own right.’
“It is more than a fair point,” the interviewer agrees, stating that Kidman has had “at least two whole lives since their split,” referencing her marriage and family with musician Keith Urban.
So why, then, was the question asked at all?
Over two decades, we still seem to have a morbid, yet one-sided, curiosity into a private relationship, because how often is Cruise asked the same when promoting his films?
Kidman is absolutely right to call the questioning out for what it is: sexist and irrelevant.
Surely, in 2021, we should do better?
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