Nicole Kidman is just a girl who can't say “norm.” Her big-screen oeuvre? Sex-obsessed, eerily possessed, scantily dressed. Virginia Woolf, naughty witches, and pertly coiffed sociopaths. Her latest odd, defiant bird flies in Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus, a fantastical take on Diane Arbus that imagines the famed out-there photographer falling for a guy who's as hairy as Cousin Itt. In real life Kidman, 39, lives in Nashville with her new husband, Aussie-raised country music god Keith Urban, and her kids, Connor Antony, 11, and Isabella Jane, 13. In a recent chat with The Advocate, the — hyperbole alert — most accomplished actress of her generation let her own hair down.
What's your day been like today? Let's set the scene.
I live in Nashville now. I went for coffee with my husband. And then we were chased by paparazzi, which is a little unnerving in Nashville; they converged upon this small town.
As your “De-e-e-ane” in Fur likes to say, tell me a secret.
Well, I have a lot of secrets. Where I stand on secrets is that they're very good for you.
Why do you think people are drawn to wild freaks?
[Laughs] I think it's that sense of danger and a sense of compassion. I think it’s about trying to — and it’s how I live my life — always see where somebody else is standing, try to see through their eyes, try and feel what they’re feeling.
You've played a lot of repressed women. Have you ever felt repressed yourself?
Of course. I’ve felt that I’ve tried to be things that I couldn’t be, I’ve tried to believe things that I couldn’t believe ... it’s probably why I really have [affinity with] a gay man or a gay woman.
What would you say to your kids if they ever came to you and said, “I'm gay, mom”?
I’d give them a huge hug and say, “What do you want from me? How can I help you? What do you need?” I recently lost probably my dearest, closest friend, Robert [McCann, her makeup artist, who died unexpectedly last year]. Robert would always say to me, “This is what you do: You just open your arms and say, ‘Here I am, and I love you.’” Because you need that unconditional support and love. Because you're not going to get that anywhere else in the world.
Why do you think some people in the world want to believe that straight actors are gay?
[Laughs] I don’t know. I suppose, you know, it’s nice to fantasize. We all have our fantasies! That's one thing that I love about Diane. She embraced fantasies. Fantasies can exist in your head, and they can be what you want them to be. They’re yours, and they’re nobody else’s.
Does the thought of two attractive men getting it on appeal to you — or is that too much of a secret?
Oh, that’s too much of a secret. I’m very discreet!
You once said that you have kind of a boy’s body. Is there a female star's body that you idealize?
I love Sophia Loren. She's gorgeous.
Last question: Have you ever seen a gay guy ogle Keith while walking down the street in Nashville?
I’m all for anyone thinking he's the cutest thing [laughs].