Nicole Kidman on Martha Gellhorn: She chased tragedies and found love
Nicole Kidman has won an Oscar, a BAFTA and three Golden Globes, but she still needs an Emmy on her mantle. That could show up thanks to her role in HBO’s “Hemingway and Gellhorn” as Martha Gellhorn, the daredevil war correspondent who fell in love and married Ernest Hemingway while dodging bombs and bullets in the Spanish Civil War and World War II.
“That’s when they came alive — when they were in turmoil, when they were in chaos,” Kidman tells Gold Derby via webcam about the literary duo who lived and loved so hard. “That’s when Martha was able to be in love.”
In time, the union failed because the couple couldn’t cope with peaceful lulls between wars. “When they were put into a domestic situation, particularly Martha, she didn’t know how to function,” Kidman says. “She didn’t know what to do. because she needed the energy and her work fed her personally as well as professionally.”
Later in life, Gellhorn was haunted by lingering public memory of the marriage: “Looking back, the thing that frustrated Martha was that she was defined by Hemingway. She was defined as his third wife and her writing was put second.” Expression of those feelings is one of the most dramatic aspects of this film as Kidman dons heavy makeup to look like Gellhorn in old age –always a big plus to Emmy (and Oscar) voters.
At the Emmys, Kidman is in a dead-heat contest for Best TV Movie/Mini Actress against Julianne Moore (“Game Change”), who competed against her at the Oscars in 2002. Back then, Kidman’s role in “The Hours” vanquished Moore’s role in “Far From Heaven,” but their latest kudos contest is toss-up.
“I saw ‘Game Change’ and I absolutely loved it,” Kidman tells Gold Derby in our webcam chat. “I’m a big fan of Julianne Moore. She’s doing incredible work, so if I was in the group of whatever women are nominated, that’s an honor for me.”