Apr 23
2019

The headline should be the other way around, since Nicole Kidman is the cover star of the latest Vanity Fair, including an in-depth interview. However, Krista Smith’s article features interviews with her “Big Little Lies” co-stars Reese Witherspoon and Meryl Streep as well, giving a wonderful insight into the show’s second season: Meryl Streep says that camaraderie is why she didn’t hesitate when the call came to join the cast for the second season. “The fans wanted more, I wanted more. I signed on without even knowing what the part was because I had such confidence in this group and just how smart they all are and how high the bar was going to be.” Kidman nods to the prototypical happy ensemble. “Look at the Friends cast, they spent all that time together—they’re different because there are no men in our equation. I mean, there are, but they’re not on the group chat, let’s put it that way.” Wait. Nicole, Reese, Laura, Zoë, and Shailene have a group chat?! What about Meryl?! “Yes,” says Kidman. “And she’s very funny.” Witherspoon describes the ultimate girls’ night. “Can you imagine that we got to go to dinner with Meryl every week? And hear her stories!? It’s like years and years of actresses being siloed off, and finally they let us intermingle. You can only imagine the conversations that we had. It was a really amazing experience of sharing our indignities and our triumphs, and just every rainbow of the female experience in our business.”

Streep plays Mary Louise, the mother-in-law of Kidman’s Celeste, who comes to town to get to the bottom of the death of her son. Streep tells me about their first day on set together. “Right off the bat she did a scene where she had to do something really, really hard, like waking up out of nothing and going right into sort of a breakdown. She did it over and over and over again, to the point where I thought, Is she being harmed in this process?” says Streep. “I scurried over to the director and I said, ‘Don’t you think you have it?’ I mean, I’ve done this before with other people, because I know what it takes to do that. She was O.K. It’s just like she has a kind of a placid, very quiet reserve that sits on top of this titanic power.” Streep says this season we will see more of that from Kidman. “I’m in awe of her. She’s like a secret, soft Valkyrie with a spine like steel. She’s very disciplined, but it’s all in protection of a very tender self. You forget,” Streep continues, “that she’s six feet tall, you know? But she is six feet tall, and sometimes she raises all of it up, and it’s … wow. That’s what you see in the end of this series. You see the full height of Nicole.” The complete article can be read over at Vanity Fair.