AN ACTRESS TO DIE FOR

IF HOLLYWOOD NEEDS PROOF THAT NICOLE KIDMAN IS NOT JUST MRS. TOM CRUISE, HER WILY PERFORMANCE AS A BITCH GOODDESS IS IT

You're researching the role of a media-obsessed cable weathergirl for the film To Die For, so you decide to lie in a hotel bed for three days, eating room-service food and watching TV nonstop. And who's your bunkmate on this field trip into junk culture? Tom Cruise.

For some people this would be nirvana. For Nicole Kidman--Mrs. Cruise--it is the proper mix of movies and marriage. "The rule was, we don't turn the television off, no matter what," she says of her marathon. "I found out that TV deadens you, and it's hypnotic. I would get involved in the talk shows,...

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