“Don’t do it, you will ruin your career”: Nicole Kidman Was Warned Before Saying Yes to Her Oscar Winning Role in Meryl Streep’s Movie The Hours

Despite the concerns, Kidman found confidence in herself and accepted the part.

"Don't do it, you will ruin your career": Nicole Kidman Was Warned Before Saying Yes to Her Oscar Winning Role in Meryl Streep's Movie The Hours


  • Actress and producer Nicole Kidman has received numerous awards and nominations throughout her career.
  • She has won several accolades and even an Oscar for Best Actress for her portrayal of Virginia Woolf in "The Hours".
  • However, Kidman initially had doubts about taking on the role, as some people warned her it could ruin her career.
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Actress cum producer Nicole Kidman is renowned for bagging some of the best roles an actor could ever ask for. While she performed spectacularly in every single one of those roles throughout her career, her impeccable performance, in return, gifted her with about 330 whopping nominations all the while winning 109 stunning accolades out of them. Unsurprisingly enough, these awards won include an Oscar for Best Actress as well.

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Nicole Kidman (@nicolekidman | Instagram)
Nicole Kidman (@nicolekidman | Instagram)

This one and only Academy Award that Kidman won was granted to her for her tremendous portrayal of Virginia Woolf in The Hours. However, as surprising as it may be, the actress was first warned before she accepted the role as people thought it might end up ruining her career!


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Nicole Kidman Was Unsure Of Taking On The Hours (2002)

Nicole Kidman in a still from The Hours (2002)
Nicole Kidman in a still from The Hours (2002)

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Back in 2002, when the role of the bipolar-disorder-affected author of some of the best books of all time, Virginia Woolf, was offered to her, Nicole Kidman wasn’t so sure if she could actually do justice to the remarkable late writer’s role.

During an interview with EW.com from back then, she talked about the same. She said:


“Well, when I read the script I thought, they can’t want me for Virginia. They must want me for something else. There’s no way I’m going to be able to pull this off. I don’t think I’m right. It’s going to be a disaster.”

However, after pondering over it for some time, Kidman found confidence in herself to take on the part.

“[But then I thought] well, if [‘The Hours’ director] Stephen Daldry believes I can do it, then I have to have some bit of faith. And when do you get a chance as an actress to play older?”

But then there were people with their ever-widening concerns about how the Eyes Wide Shut actress could possibly ruin her career if she took on the character of Woolf.


“So many people say, ‘Don’t do it. Oh my God, you shouldn’t! You’ll ruin your career.’ But I kind of like it when people say I shouldn’t do something. It entices me.”

All thanks to her rebellious personality, Nicole Kidman agreed to play Virginia Woolf in Meryl Streep‘s The Hour, which earned her her first and only Oscar ever.

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Nicole Kidman Did All She Could For Her Role In The Hours

Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf in a still from The Hours (2002)
Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf in a still from The Hours (2002)

Nicole Kidman not only proved her own fears of not being able to fit the character wrong but even surpassed numerous fans’ expectations of her with her extraordinary performance as the late writer. But for this, she had to prepare in an exceptional manner as well.

To pull off the role perfectly, the Big Little Lies star first decided to live alone in a cottage in the middle of the woods so she could isolate herself to think like Virginia Woolf. Talking about the same during the interview, she said:


“I wanted to be isolated so that I could be with my thoughts and basically do what Virginia did — read a lot and feel isolated. It was a little like I was captive. For different roles, you do different things. For this, it was very important for me to go into her psychology.”

But that wasn’t the only thing she prepared for the film: she did everything she could to completely familiarize herself with Woolf’s personality.

“For [‘The Hours’], I’m playing someone who existed. She smoked, so I smoked. She wrote with her right hand, so I wrote with my right hand. She drowned, so I put myself underwater. But, I had to keep telling myself, ‘Don’t actually drown yourself!’”

Going to extremes like this for a simple role is nothing less than the perfect example of a legendary personality: something that Nicole Kidman has proved time and time again that she is.


Written by Mahin Sultan

Mahin Sultan is a News Content Writer at FandomWire. With almost one year's worth of experience in her field, she has explored and attained a deep understanding of numerous topics in various niches, mostly entertainment.

An all-things-good enthusiast, Mahin is currently pursuing her Bachelor's degree in Commerce, and her love for entertainment has given her a solid foundation of reporting in the same field. Besides being a foodie, she loves to write and spends her free time either with her nose buried in a good book or binging on COD or K-dramas, anime, new movies, and TV serials (the awesome ones, obviously).

So far, Mahin's professional portfolio has more than 500 articles written on various niches, including Entertainment, Health and wellbeing, and Fashion and trends, among others.