I’m worried about Nicole Kidman. I was watching The Undoing and thought, wow, she’s playing pretty much the same character as she did in Big Little Lies: an accomplished woman who has to deal with the horrific actions of her asshole husband. Kidman plays the part well, no doubt why she keeps getting cast in these roles, but I tried to remember the last time I saw her doing something joyous on screen. Happy Feet was the best I could come up with, and that was a looooooong time ago, and only her voice got to have fun.
Now, don’t come at me with The Prom or Aquaman, that’s two light roles in a huge chasm of darkness, and I think she needs a break from all that misery. Bombshell, Boy Erased, Destroyer, The Beguiled – you can tell from the titles that troubled roles are overrepresented in the woman’s oeuvre. Is her penchant for haunted characters a trauma response to being married to Tom Cruise all those years? I’m not a doctor, not even remotely a person of science, but the answer is clearly yes.
And so I present a series of movie pitches for Ms. Kidman to consider which will allow her to reconnect to her lighter side. I recommend she make all of the movies below before contemplating any further serious or dramatic roles.
- Another remake of Ghostbusters; Kidman plays Slimer.
- Installment #78 in the Fast and the Furious movie franchise. Kidman plays a salty mechanic who reluctantly helps Paul Walker’s ghost win a big automobile race. I’ve not watched any of the movies in this series, but I am confident that this pitch fits perfectly.
- Nicole Kidman and Uma Thurman are a couple who adopt a puppy. Eighty percent of the movie is them playing with puppies, deciding which one to adopt. The only conflict is when the puppy chews up one of Kidman’s shoes, and Thurman has to tell her, but it turns out that Kidman was planning on donating those shoes to Goodwill, and they laugh and laugh and laugh.
- A kid loses a tooth on Christmas Eve, and Santa and the Tooth Fairy (Kidman) meet in the kid’s room. It seems like there’s going to be a turf war, but then Santa and the Tooth Fairy fall in love, and Santa brings the Tooth Fairy back to the North Pole, and the big reveal of the movie is that this all happened years and years ago, and THE TOOTH FAIRY HAS ALSO BEEN MRS. CLAUS ALL ALONG!
- A live action version of The Emperor’s New Groove; Kidman plays Yzma (RIP the great Eartha Kitt).
- Marshmallows Everywhere! Marshmallows start falling from the sky, and Kidman plays the kooky but lovable scientist who finally figures out how to make a gigantic trampoline out of all the marshmallows, and everyone can bounce as their means of transportation, and cars and planes become obsolete, and Kidman is given the key to the city for her great work.
- Dogs! A response to the 2019 film Cats! Kidman plays a singing, dancing Dachshund whose signature move is to run under the legs of bigger dogs to get a better smell of their butts.
- The Last Blockbuster – Kidman is the last employee of the last Blockbuster video store, and she’s happy right where she is. She strikes up a friendship (maybe more?) with the last customer, and they talk about movies and she helps him work through his shit. But not her. She’s got no shit. She’s all good.
- Kidman bakes 17 cakes, each one more elaborate and delicate than the last. Then, we watch her eat a piece of each one, slowly, and she really and truly enjoys herself.
I’m sure we can all agree that these are perfect pitches, but believe it or not, I could come up with more if needed. So if you happen to represent Nicole Kidman, could you please pass these highly greenlightable ideas on to her? And could you also please let her know that I hope she’s doing okay.
Amy writes and lives in Ontario, Canada, and has previously written for CBC’s The Irrelevant Show, Shameless Magazine, See Magazine, and has been published on Flash Fiction Magazine and Daily Drunk Magazine. Follow her quest to become a River Phoenix movie completist on her blog. Find her on Twitter @AmyRNeufeld.