February 17, 2017 • Category: "Big Little Lies", Articles & Interviews •
Comments Off on LA Times: Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon on bringing the female-driven ‘Big Little Lies’ to life
Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon on bringing the female-driven ‘Big Little Lies’ to life
She had learned not to get excited. Australian author Liane Moriarty had gone through the process of having a book optioned for a movie or TV series before and had endured the realities of it getting lost in Hollywood development purgatory.
Moriarty, though, had never done business with Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman.
“When I met with Nicole, she was like, ‘No, no, no. If we option it, get excited. We don’t option things just for the sake of it. We don’t have time for that,’ ” Moriarty said by phone when recalling her midmorning coffee meeting with Kidman in a Sydney suburb about 18 months ago.
“She kept her word.”
Moriarty’s 2014 bestseller “Big Little Lies” is now a seven-episode limited series on HBO. And it boasts the Oscar-winning actresses as leads and executive producers.
It continues in the HBO tradition of drawing marquee feature film stars to the small screen. And it serves as a bit of an antidote to the premium network’s recent tent-pole attraction, “Westworld,” and the unusual religious drama “The Young Pope.”
“Not since ‘Big Love’ have we had a drama that is this female-centric,” said Casey Bloys, HBO’s president of programming. “The issues they get into on the show are things people deal with in life, and it was nice to have this framework to put these stories forward.”
February 17, 2017 • Category: "Big Little Lies" •
Comments Off on Big Little Lies’ Stephen Graybill Reveals What It’s Really Like Working with Reese Witherspoon
Big Little Lies’ Stephen Graybill Reveals What It’s Really Like Working with Reese Witherspoon
Walking onto the Big Little Lies set for the first time was a daunting task for actor Stephen Graybill.
“It was like being shot out of a cannon. I was thinking, ‘These are incredible actresses!’ That can be really intimidating,” the actor tells PEOPLE of working with Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern and Shailene Woodley on the new HBO limited series. “They are big names and you never know how people are going to be.”
“I thought they might be a little distant, but that theory was quickly dispelled on the first day,” he continues. “Very quickly after arriving, I found myself saying, ‘Hey, Reese. How are you?’ and I’d think, ‘Wow. They cold not have been more welcoming and generous.’ ”
Graybill — a British American Drama Academy graduate and veteran of the New York theater scene who stars in Lies as Saxon Baker, a character pivotal to the secrets revealed in the HBO series — worked closely alongside Woodley and says that the actress was “unexpectedly vulnerable.”
“She has an incredible breadth of emotional availability to her,” Graybill says of Woodley. “She was able to go different ways and give the director different options: intense, crying, unsure. ”
Graybill says he appreciated the improv-friendly nature of the set.
“It was really exciting,” he says. “I’m so honored to be in this project with all of them. I’m blown away and am so grateful to have done this with such amazing people.”
Big Little Lies premieres Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on HBO.
Over the past couple of months I’ve been continuing to work on the Public Appearances section of our Gallery, and 2014 is now complete! 2014 was Reese’s busiest year to date, as she promoted Wild extensively and then celebrated its well-deserved success during the first part of ‘awards season’. She looked fabulous this year, confidently wearing a multitude of colours and designers – I think my favourite looks from this year are the Los Angeles and London premiere’s of Wild … but really, she looks amazing in all the photos 😉 Thousands of photos from these events have been added to the Gallery, so enjoy browsing 🙂
Before the red carpet premiere on Tuesday, the Big Little Lies cast attended a press conference and did several press interviews for their show. Reese looked cute in a little blue Draper James dress, and posed with her co-star/co-producer Nicole Kidman at the press conference – we have 65 gorgeous HQ photos from the conference in our Gallery for you today!
In addition, another 80+ HQ photos from the red carpet premiere have been added to the Gallery, including some cute shots of Reese with Nicole, and her daughter and husband. And lastly for now, our original post covering the premiere has been updated with videos and articles from the night.
The New York Times interviewed Nicole Kidman to promote Big Little Lies, and it features several mentions of Reese and the development and production of the show; here are the Reese-related snippets:
How Nicole Kidman Puts Women First in Hollywood
It makes sense that “Big Little Lies” became a series on HBO rather than a feature film at a major studio. As superhero and other tentpole movies dominate the release schedules of the major studios, even bona fide movie stars like Natalie Portman, Daniel Craig and Bradley Cooper are bringing their projects to places like HBO, Showtime, Amazon and Netflix.
“There’s not as much of a separation anymore,” Ms. Witherspoon said in a telephone interview. “There’s a bigger pool to work in, the talent base is much broader than it used to be, and it’s become sort of a blur — what is television, what is a movie?”
Just two and a half years elapsed between conception to finished project. In the spring of 2014, Bruna Pappandrea, Ms. Witherspoon’s former partner in her production company (Pacific Standard), who is also friends with Ms. Kidman, read a galley of “Big Little Lies,” thought it was great and called Ms. Witherspoon, who was in New Orleans shooting “Hot Pursuit.” Entranced by the book, Ms. Witherspoon got Ms. Kidman, an old friend, to read it, too.
Ms. Kidman said she was drawn in by the many moods of the book, by its strong female characters, and that “as much as it’s about women who are feuding, who are trying to destroy one another, it’s also about friendships.” (The character she plays, Celeste, seems to have a perfect life, including a hunky younger husband played by Alexander Skarsgard, but it’s a facade that begins to peel away as the series goes on.)
She called Ms. Witherspoon back. “I said, ‘I’m in if you’re in,’” Ms. Kidman recalled. “And she said, ‘I’m in. Now all we have to do is get it.’” That meant persuading the author, Ms. Moriarty, at home in Australia, to sell them the exclusive rights.
Ms. Kidman was on her way there for a vacation, and she and Ms. Moriarty met in a coffee shop in Sydney. Ms. Moriarty said she had not expected much from the meeting. “I’ve had other books optioned before, and other authors have said, ‘Never get too excited until the day they start shooting,’” she said by telephone. “And Nicole said, ‘If I option it, get excited because I don’t just option things for the sake of it.’”
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