Nicole Kidman Recalls Moving to U.S. After Falling for Tom Cruise: 'I Always Make Choices for Love'

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Nicole Kidman's marriage to Tom Cruise definitely shaped the course of her career and life.

Nicole Kidman's marriage to Tom Cruise definitely shaped the course of her career and life.

The 51-year-old actress has been named Variety's Show Woman of the Year, and she opens up to the magazine about how she became a Hollywood actress after being raised in Syndey, Australia. Kidman started taking acting classes in high school and landed TV roles in her late teens, but moved to Los Angeles after meeting now ex-husband Tom Cruise on the set of their 1990 film, Days of Thunder.

“I moved here because I fell in love and got married,” Kidman acknowledges. “I always make choices for love, and everything kind of had to fall in place around that.”

Though Cruise was already a mega-star when they met, Kidman says it was definitely a different time back then when it came to the level of scrutiny on their relationship.

“If I look back, it actually didn’t seem like a lot of interest,” she reflects. “We didn’t have social media then. We didn’t have paparazzi like now. You had definite control of it.”

One thing the couple had in common was their love for terrifying, but thrilling, stunts. Kidman's close friend, Hugh Jackman, tells Variety that she and Cruise often went sky-diving.

“Did you know she can jump out of a plane at 10,000 feet?” Jackman reveals. “I think one day she did it like six times. She and Tom used to do it. She loved it.”

“That’s the crux of my personality,” Kidman replies. “Standing there, just going, ‘I want to,’ and then ‘Oh, no, no, no’ and just jumping anyway.”


Kidman and Cruise divorced in 2001 after more than a decade of marriage. The pair shares two adopted kids together -- 25-year-old Isabella and 23-year-old Connor. Last month, the Oscar-winning actress made an appearance on the Today show and talked about how being married at 23 to Cruise (when he was 28) gave her a different experience than most women at that age. 

"I'm saying because I was married at 23 years old, I wasn't going to parties, or I wasn't going out a lot," she explained. "I was pretty much at home. I had my first child at 25 and I was married. I was in a family, so my sense of being in the world was I was working or I was at home."

In a New York magazine article earlier that month, Kidman also opened up about one aspect of her marriage to Cruise, writing, "I got married very young, but it definitely wasn't power for me -- it was protection."

"I married for love, but being married to an extremely powerful man kept me from being sexually harassed," she continued. "I would work, but I was still very much cocooned. So when I came out of it at 32, 33, it's almost like I had to grow up." 

These days, the Oscar-winning actress is happily married to country superstar Keith Urban. The couple has two daughters together, 10-year-old Sunday and 7-year-old-Faith.

Kidman recently supported Urban at the 2018 CMA Awards, where they both couldn't stop crying over his big Entertainer of the Year win. Watch the sweet moment below: