Nicole Kidman was handed the keys to the city of Sydney as she returned to her native Australia for the premiere of her latest movie Cold Mountain. The actress is already being tipped for Oscar success for her performance, but refused to be drawn on her chances. "I don't buy into any of that until it happens," she said.
Thousands of fans turned out to see Kidman as she returned to Sydney, and she delighted them by signing autographs and chatting to the crowd. Also at the screening was Cold Mountain director Anthony Minghella, but the film's co-stars Jude Law and Renee Zellweger were absent. The traditional red carpet was ditched in favour of a white one to go with the snowy theme of the film, which is set against the backdrop of the American Civil War. Kidman was born in Hawaii but moved to Washington DC soon after her birth and then to Sydney when she was three.
She was presented with the keys to the city of Sydney by Mayor Lucy Turnbull. The actress also spoke again about her split from ex-husband Tom Cruise, saying she felt so humiliated that all she wanted to do at the time was stay in bed. "I sort of thought at that time that I was going to curl up in a ball and just never get out of bed," she said. "But I have two kids and I had to get out of bed" - informs &to=http://news.bbc.co.uk' target=_blank>BBC.
"I am relieved, relieved to have made it," Kidman said of not being home to Australia since January. Event organizers traded the traditional red carpet for a white version at the ornate State Theatre in Sydney for the screening of the American civil war epic. Kidman was greeted at the premiere by New South Wales Premier Bob Carr and his wife Helena and was presented with the keys to the city by Sydney Lord Mayor Lucy Turnbull. Last year, Kidman took home the best actress Oscar for The Hours. If crowned again will become the first actress since Katharine Hepburn in 1967-1968 to win consecutive best actress award – reports &to=http://www.globeandmail.com' target=_blank>Globeandmail.com
So what has winning an Oscar been like for Kidman?
"It's one of those moments that you say I'm so glad I have it in my memory now," she said. "It's part of my life's memories. It means a lot to your family - it means a lot to my parents and for my kids as well. It's something when your mother suddenly wins this thing that they can see that's gold. To an eight-year-old and a 10-year-old, something that's gold is very impressive. They're, like, 'Is it real?' "
Kidman was touched by the reception, including getting the key to Sydney from the Lord Mayor, Lucy Turnbull, at the Cold Mountain premiere.
"This is where I grew up. Everywhere in this city has memories attached to it; the smells, everything. Then to be standing there at Christmas, in the place where I used to go Christmas shopping as a kid, and to have all those people lining the streets, it's just a very strange path and it's very much appreciated."
Kidman used to work in a Sydney theatre as a teenager but it was the Capitol, not the State where Cold Mountain screened. She had a school holiday job during the Sesame Street live show.