Nicole Kidman’s honesty towards her craft made things easy for Karyn Kusama while directing Destroyer, says the filmmaker.
The crime drama features the 51-year-old actor as an undercover LAPD officer who must take out members of a gang, years after her case was blown.
In an interview with IndieWire Filmmaker Toolkit, Kusama said her collaboration with the Oscar winner was the “most intense”, an experience that she last witnessed while working with Michelle Rodriquez on sports drama Girlfight.
“I think the irony of comparing those two things is that part of Nicole’s gift is she never shows up like, ‘Oh I’ve got my bag of tricks, I’m just going to go into my bag of tricks, I’ve got this all figured out.’ She’s very open about not always finding her way through,” she said.
“She’s very open (and would) say, ‘I think we need to explore here,’ or, ‘I’m not quite sure what to do.’ That honesty actually makes my job so much easier because we can stop and say ‘Let’s talk, let’s figure out what are we saying about this character, who is she at this moment’ and we can have much more open-ended conversations about what are we doing here,” she added.
Kusama said the actor has always been clear as to what she can do and what she cannot.
“That’s how she framed it to me initially, that’s why in many respects she convinced me of how right she was, she was searching,” the director said.
Destroyer also features Toby Kebbell, Tatiana Maslany, Scoot McNairy, Bradley Whitford, and Sebastian Stan. The film had its world premiere at the Telluride Film Festival in August last year.