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Kidman not so coy, theage.com.au, 6th June 2005

Years in the spotlight have helped Oscar winner Nicole Kidman overcome chronic shyness.

She was once so shy she had to hold a friend's hand while walking the red carpet or undertaking publicity projects.

But promoting her latest film Bewitched in Hollywood today, Kidman said she was finally able to do things her shyness had prevented in the past.

"I used to be painfully shy and now I am able to do the things that I have too," Kidman said.

In Bewitched Kidman plays Isobel, a real life wife who is cast in the television series remake of the classic TV series of the same name which starred Elizabeth Montgomery.

The film also stars funnyman Will Ferrell as Kidman's love interest, as well as Shirley MacLaine and Michael Caine.

"I decline to answer a lot of things," Kidman, who last night attended the MTV movie awards where ex-husband Tom Cruise took to the stage with new girlfriend Katie Holmes to accept an award.

"I am very protective of who I am and what I do. Emotionally I try to deal with things in a really honest way."

Bewitched opens in the United States on June 24 and hits Australian cinemas on July 7.

Kidman spent several months in Australia this past summer when she was to star opposite Russell Crowe in Eucalyptus.

When that project was postponed due to scripting issues, Kidman stayed in Australia holidaying with family.

But she was the subject of much attention from local paparazzi and even took out a restraining order against one photographer.

However she says she is generally able to live a normal life.

"I am quite fortunate in a way that I play such an array of characters that people don't really know who I am," the 37-year-old said.

"And it tends to be this strange warmth (from fans) which is really nice. People don't intrude. I have things with the paparazzi but in a much broader sense audiences and people in the street tend not to invade."

Kidman also spoke of being a mother saying she had to wake up early this morning to get her son Connor ready for a tennis lesson.

"I staggered out of bed at six to get him up on the court by 7.30am and I got to tell you it ain't pretty," she said.

"It is sweats and a tee-shirt and slightly bleary eyed but desperately trying to be a good mum."

Kidman said it was often difficult to juggle motherhood and a busy film career.

"What you've got now is a really tired mother," the actor said.

"My kids are at a Dodgers game while I'm doing this interview and then we're off to an Italian restaurant tonight because I don't have time to cook."

And Kidman's work commitments will keep her juggling over the coming months with her intense promotional schedule for Bewitched and upcoming film projects.

She is currently based in New York filming Fur, a bio-pic based on the life of the late photographer Diane Arbus.

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