A local Australian paper called the Townsville Bulletin recently got themselves invited to the set of Australia, where they received a guided tour and access to the crew and cast members, up to and including Nicole Kidman. The actress told the paper that taking on this role -- a 1940s cattle baroness who deals with romantic entanglements and eventually gets caught up in the Japanese bombing of Australia -- will bring her career full circle. She's referring to the fact that this film is being shot in the same general area that Dead Calm -- the pic that put her on the map -- was filmed nearly twenty years ago. "I expect we'll be shooting in Bowen for almost two months," she told the paper. "We'll almost be locals by the time we leave."
Kidman also talked to the Bulletin about working with Baz Luhrmann, her Moulin Rouge director. "I had the most wonderful experience working with Baz on my last Australian movie, Moulin Rouge," she said. "I think he's a creative genius. So too is his wonderful wife Catherine Martin who is the production designer. They are two of the most special people in the world." Kidman went on to say that "I've wanted to make this film since I was a little girl. I mean that in the sense of wanting to make a film about my country for my country."
The set visit, which was personally chapperoned by the location manager, allowed the paper to score lots of details, such as the fact that an entire town, with a movie theater, police station, hotel, brothel, and stockyards is being created for the film. In tomorrow's edition of the paper, they are also running quotes from Luhrmann about wrapping up shooting in Sydney and moving the production to Bowen, where some central shooting will take place. "The one thing we already feel, and in fact have felt from the day of our first visit, is that the citizens of Bowen and the outlying areas are making this film together with us," he says. (The town of Bowen is being prepped to stand in for 1930s Darwin, Australia) The paper notes that Kidman and Jackman are due to arrive in town tomorrow and is also publishing a snap of a woman they claim bears a "striking resemblance" to Kidman and must be her body double, arriving for work.