Nicole Kidman’s red carpet date travelled for 35 hours to join her in Cannes.
The actress’s husband — musician Keith Urban — made the trip from Sydney, where’s he’s been filming “The Voice,” to escort her up the famous Palais stairs at the Cannes Film Festival for the screening of her film, “The Paperboy.”
And Kidman says his effort meant “everything” to her: “As long as he’s there, he’s my rock, everything’s fine. I feel a little out to sea if he’s not there.”
Not that she didn’t know what she was doing. It’s the star’s fifth time in Cannes, so she’s used to the huge photo calls, press conferences and international interviews in the palm-tree scattered French coastal resort.
This time Kidman has two movies showing — “The Paperboy,” which is competing for the Palme d’Or top prize, and, outside of competition, the HBO movie “Hemingway&Gellhorn.”
“The Paperboy,” director Lee Daniels’ steamy Southern noir in which she stars with Zac Efron and Matthew McConaughey, received mixed reactions at press screenings before the premiere — so the cast were delighted when the audience took to their feet to clap for 15 minutes after seeing it.
While a teary Efron described the ovation as one of the most profound moments of his life and the rest of the cast was overwhelmed, Kidman remained dry-eyed — if appreciative.
“We got an amazing standing ovation, which was great. This is my fifth time so I’ve had many, many, many different reactions,” she said in an interview with The Associated Press on Saturday. “That’s the longest standing ‘O’ I’ve ever gotten at Cannes.”
“Lee was crying, but I wasn’t crying. I cry at my kids, I cry with my family, I don’t really cry outside of that — that’s the stuff that brings me to tears!” Kidman said. “All of this other stuff, the glitter, and those sort of things, I’m more sort of immune to at this stage. It’s probably because I’ve been doing it for so long.”
She credits putting showbiz further down her list of priorities with keeping her relationship on an even keel, even if it does involve a lot of international travel.
“Keith and I have been at this for a long time. We know where it all stands, so there’s kind of a practicality in asense,” she explained.
While that doesn’t sound very romantic, Kidman says they manage to keep it going, even on the road.
“We can have a really cool life together because that’s what matters. In terms of romance, for us, that’s so much more important than any of this,” she says, gesturing to the lights and the cameras pointing at her.
The 65th Cannes Film Festival runs to Sunday, when the jury sits down to choose its prizewinners.