Nicole Kidman‘s upcoming movie Being The Ricardos received rave reviews after its first screening for critics on Saturday night.
The 56-year-old actress, who stars as Lucille Ball, was in attendance for the screening and panel discussion along with the film’s writer and director Aaron Sorkin and her co-star Javier Bardem, who portrays Desi Arnaz.
At the screening, the Oscar-winning actress revealed she had ‘massive trepidation’ about playing the comedy legend.
Hit: Nicole Kidman’s upcoming movie Being the Ricardos received rave reviews after its first screening for critics on Saturday night (Nicole pictured at the Deadline Contenders event on Sunday)
However, critics who viewed the movie appeared to be extremely impressed with Kidman’s performance, which is already generating Oscar buzz.
New York Times reporter Kyle Buchanan tweeted, ‘Lucy, you’ve got some campaigning to do: BEING THE RICARDOS played well in its first screening, suggesting a solid awards contender.
‘I bought Nicole more as offscreen, dramatic Lucy than as a sitcom dynamo, but the audience still ate her and Javier Bardem up.’
First look: The 56-year-old actress, who stars as Lucille Ball, was in attendance for the screening and panel discussion along with the film’s writer and director Aaron Sorkin and her co-star Javier Bardem, who portrays Desi Arnaz
Turner Classic Movies host Dave Karger wrote, ‘Last night’s first big screening of #BeingTheRicardos definitely silenced the skeptics.
‘A 5th Oscar nomination for Nicole Kidman seems especially likely. So cool to chat with her and the fantastic Javier Bardem (also a strong contender) in front of the very impressed audience.’
Collider’s Perri Nemiroff revealed that she had an emotional reaction to the film.
Nervous: At the screening, the Oscar-winning actress revealed she had ‘massive trepidation’ about playing the comedy legend
Blown away: However, critics who viewed the movie appeared to be extremely impressed with Kidman’s performance, which is already generating Oscar buzz
‘#BeingTheRicardos just left me in a puddle of tears,’ she tweeted. ‘What a beautiful and deeply moving behind the scenes look at the pressures and complexities involved in making that show – highs, lows and everything in between. Nicole Kidman is INCREDIBLE.’
Nemiroff went on the say, ‘Alia Shawkat, JK Simmons and Nina Arianda are especially impressive scene stealers. Might even be a little overwhelmed by the range of emotions I just cycled through. FAR exceeded my expectations.’
In his review of the movie, Variety film critic Clayton Davis heaped praise on the performances as well as Sorkin’s writing and directing.
High praise: New York Times reporter Kyle Buchanan said that the audience ate Kidman and Bardem up
Silencing the skeptics: TCM host Dave Karger said that a 5th Oscar nomination for Kidman seemed likely
Emotional: Collider’s Perri Nemiroff revealed that she had an emotional reaction to the film
Wowed: Nemiroff added that the film ‘FAR exceeded my expectations
‘Under Sorkin’s direction, ‘Being the Ricardos’ presents plenty of chuckles and sympathy for our favorite redhead in history,’ Davis wrote.
‘Kidman embodies the essence of Ball, especially in her mannerisms during the rehearsals and filming of episodes. She very well may break your heart, demanding the viewer’s sympathy and a best actress nomination may seem almost certainly in the cards for her.’
At the screening, Kidman confessed that she was extremely nervous about playing the I Love Lucy star in the new biopic and credited the support of Sorkin for helping her take on the part.
Star power: At the Deadline Contenders event, Kidman was joined by the film’s writer and director Aaron Sorkin (far left) and her co-stars (L-R) Javier Bardem, Nina Arianda and J.K. Simmons
Nicole recalled: ‘I had massive trepidation about a month prior, and Aaron had to get on the phone and send me emails saying, ‘You’ve got this.’
‘It was frightening but incredibly exciting.’
The new Amazon Studios movie centers on a single production week of the 1950s sitcom I Love Lucy and focuses on the relationship between Lucille and her co-star Desi – who played Lucy and Ricky Ricardo in the comedy respectively – and Nicole revealed that the project helped her get to know ‘the woman behind the lipstick’.
‘I had massive trepidation about a month prior, and Aaron had to get on the phone and send me emails saying, ‘You’ve got this,” she said about taking on the role, as reported by Variety
In reel life: The film depicts the often complicated relationship between real-life Hollywood power couple Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz as they filmed their hit 1950’s sitcom, I Love Lucy
Taking on an icon: Sitting onstage at the panel event, Nicole spoke about her role as Lucille Ball in the upcoming biopic
The Bombshell actress explained: ‘I fell in love with her as I was reading the script. I realized what she was doing (was) trailblazing for women.’
Javier also revealed that he knew little about his character despite the popularity of I Love Lucy in the actor’s native Spain.
The 52-year-old star shared: ‘I was obsessed with him and his skills as a comedian, as a person, as a producer and a musician at that time while being a foreigner in this country.’
Sorkin recreated an iconic I Love Lucy moment in the film with Ball stomping on grapes during a winemaking scene and Nicole was determined to perform it to perfection.
She said: ‘It was my obsession to get it absolutely accurate. It was his obsession to have this human being portrayed – what’s behind the creation of Lucy Ricardo and who is the woman behind this character?’
The film also stars Nina Arianda as Vivian Vance, and J.K. Simmons as William Frawley.
It’s set to premiere in cinemas next month, before streaming on Amazon Prime from December 21.
Intriguing: Nicole revealed that the project helped her get to know ‘the woman behind the lipstick’