Nicole Kidman Says She’s 'Excited' to Play Lucille Ball: 'She's an Amazing Woman'
The actress is set to play the comedy icon in a new Aaron Sorkin film that also stars Javier Bardem
The Oscar winner spoke of playing the comedy legend for Aaron Sorkin's upcoming film Being the Ricardos in an interview with Variety on Wednesday.
"I was like, 'Yeah, I would love to give it a go,'" Kidman, 53, said of accepting the role. "With Aaron's words and his direction and Javier… that's kind of a wonderful prospect to, you know. But yikes, off we go. Give it a go. Try my best—see if I can do it."
Javier Bardem will play Desi Arnaz, Ball's then-husband and comedic partner in I Love Lucy.
The actress added that she's been watching plenty of episodes of the iconic show, saying, "I love Lucille, having looked now and delved into her."
"She's an amazing woman," Kidman added. "I'm very excited for people to see what Aaron found out about her and the way he's interpreted Desi and Lucy and the way that it's so rich. I didn't know any of this."
Earlier this month, Deadline reported Kidman and Bardem were in negotiations to play the famous on-screen and off-screen couple for the upcoming film.
The movie is set to take place during the filming of the much-loved CBS sitcom as the couple faces a crisis that could end their careers and their marriage during a week of production on I Love Lucy.
The show aired from 1951 to 1957 and spanned six seasons. Ball and Arnaz played married couple Lucy and Ricky Ricardo, as Lucy tries numerous schemes to be part of show business through Ricky's nightclub.
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In real life, Ball and Arnaz married in 1940 and had two children together: daughter Lucie Arnaz, 69, and son Desi Arnaz Jr., 67. They divorced in 1960.
Kidman's casting received some pushback from those who thought Debra Messing or Carole Cook would be a better fit for the role. Ball and Arnaz's daughter, Lucie, defended Kidman's casting last week in a video she shared on Facebook, saying, "It's a done deal."
"The contracts aren't actually signed, which is why I haven't said anything publicly about it," Lucie said at the time. "But I felt I should just at least try to calm the waters here."
"Here's the deal. You should understand. We are not doing a remake of I Love Lucy. No one has to impersonate Lucy Ricardo nor do the Vitameatavegamin routine, or the chocolate factory routine or any of the silly things," Lucie said. "It's the story of Lucille Ball, my actual mother, not Lucy Ricardo, and her husband, Dezi Arnaz, my dad, not Ricky Ricardo."
"There will be humor in the film, but it is a story of the two of them and how they met and what went right with finding the show, what went wrong, their relationship, their love affair," she continued. "Now, of course, it's going to have I Love Lucy in it — as a matter of fact, Aaron Sorkin has set it on the stage of a filming one week of rehearsal, rehearsing and filming the show — but all this other stuff takes place during that time."