Nicole Kidman Interview: ‘Big Little Lies’
“There’s so many places that she is still so damaged, raw and secretive. And she’s not healed, and it was really important for me to keep exploring that,” says Nicole Kidman about returning to her role as Celeste Wright in season two of “Big Little Lies,” which aired on HBO over the summer. “Recovery from trauma is complicated. It’s kind of like one step forward, two steps back … It’s not an easy path.” Watch our exclusive video interview with Kidman above.
Based on Liane Moriarty‘s 2014 novel, “Big Little Lies” ended its first season with the killing of Celeste’s abusive husband (Alexander Skarsgard), and season two explores how she recovers from his abuse and his death. It’s a overwhelming emotional process that pulls Celeste in different directions at once because she “remembers good things and is still very much pulled and addicted to what that was, but at the same time she knows how so incredibly it sabotaged her and her children.”
She’s also faced with the arrival of her mother-in-law, Mary Louise (Meryl Streep), who is determined to get to the bottom of her son’s death. “Meryl is such a supporter of women and female directors,” says Kidman of her new co-star, who has a strong “desire to work with women and explore these light and dark sides of women and their relationships with other women.”
The relationship between Celeste and Mary Louise certainly leans towards the dark side, with Mary Louise ultimately suing Celeste for custody of Celeste’s children. But it’s in court that Celeste gets to reassert herself as a mother and a survivor. “Celeste is coping, and she’s actually coping well considering the circumstances,” Kidman explains. “She’s reaching her bottom. She’s going to get better. And she’s going to move forward … She is a good mother to these boys.”
But will the series move forward for a third season? Kidman is open to the possibility. “If Liane Moriarty writes another book, which she’s definitely percolating, I think there would be a very strong way for us to come back. I don’t know when that would happen, but it would be wonderful to see.” She’d be especially interested in seeing how the events of the first two seasons affect the lives of the characters’ children when they’re older.
And of course there’s the appeal of working with Reese Witherspoon, Laura Dern and company again. “I just love being able to be around and learn from them … It’s so rare, unbelievably rare, as we’ve always said. We’re usually surrounded by men. Rarely are you surrounded by women.”