Nicole Kidman praised at AFI achievement award gala

The AFI Life Achievement Award is the highest accolade granted by the American Film Institute

By Agencies

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Published: Sun 28 Apr 2024, 10:30 PM

Hollywood luminaries convened on Saturday evening to honour Nicole Kidman as she was presented with the esteemed AFI Life Achievement Award, the highest accolade granted by the American Film Institute, reported Variety.

The annual tribute unfolded at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles, where a gathering of Kidman's closest friends and industry peers, including Meryl Streep, Morgan Freeman, Reese Witherspoon, and Naomi Watts, came together to commemorate her illustrious career.

Bedazzled in a figure-hugging gold sequin gown, Kidman made a grand entrance into the theatre amid a standing ovation, accompanied by the melodic strains of "Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend."

The evening commenced with a video featuring Morgan Freeman in a playful homage to Kidman's recent ad campaign for AMC Theatres, promoting the return to cinema-going post-pandemic. Freeman remarked, "Somehow she makes heartbreak feel good in a place like this," as he set the tone for the evening.

Taking the stage at the Dolby, Freeman extended his heartfelt congratulations to Kidman as a fellow AFI Life Achievement honoree, reminiscing about his fondness for her 2001 musical "Moulin Rouge." He concluded his tribute by serenading Kidman with a line from Elton John's "Your Song," singing, "How wonderful life is while you're in the world."

Naomi Watts shared her personal reflections on Kidman, affectionately describing her as "the sister I never had." The two met as aspiring actors in Sydney at the age of 15, and Watts praised Kidman's generosity and unwavering support throughout their friendship. "She has the heart of a lioness," Watts remarked.

In a Variety interview, AFI president Bob Gazzale commended Kidman's embodiment of "the glamour and romance of Hollywood past."

The event showcased Kidman's remarkable versatility as an actress, featuring clips from her iconic performances, ranging from the spirited showgirl Satine in Baz Luhrmann's "Moulin Rouge" to her transformative portrayal of Virginia Woolf in Stephen Daldry's "The Hours," for which she clinched the Academy Award for Best Actress in 2002.


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