Lucy Interpretation: How Nicole Kidman Learned To Channel Lucille Ball

NICOLE KIDMAN and JAVIER BARDEM star in BEING THE RICARDOS Photo: GLEN WILSON © AMAZON CONTENT SERVICES LLC

In the history of American television, there are few personalities as beloved as Lucille Ball. Like Betty White, Ball was a pioneer who was just as active behind the camera as she was in front of it. Ball and her husband, Desi Arnaz Jr., not only starred in their hit series, I Love Lucy, but also produced it — and many other shows — through their Desilu production company. I Love Lucy, of course, remains one of the most popular television shows of all time. During its initial run, it was America’s most-watched program for four of its six seasons, and it’s still seen by tens of millions of people worldwide in syndication today. Ball became one of America’s most recognizable figures, and her legacy as a producer lives on even today. (Two ongoing franchises, Star Trek and Mission: Impossible, were initially born as Desilu productions.) But when Nicole Kidman was cast as Ball in the new film Being the Ricardos, the Australian actress wasn’t exactly sure how to play the American icon. And, as she learned more about the woman she’d be playing and the shoes she’d be filling, she told us she started to feel the weight of expectations on her shoulders, so she relied on writer/director Aaron Sorkin to help her bring the characterization to life.(Click on the media bar below to hear Nicole Kidman)

Being the Ricardos is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

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