Jason Momoa and Nicole Kidman first worked together in the 2018 DC superhero film Aquaman. Despite her eternally youthful looks and the small age difference between the two, Kidman was cast as Momoa’s mother in James Wan’s blockbuster, which of course surprised some fans.
Speaking to Deadline in 2017, Kidman explained that it was her character, Lady Atlanna, that really drew her to the film. “As he [Wan] said “Warrior from the sea” wearing mother of pearl, I said “Yes. Female warrior from the sea. I like,'” she said, adding, “as soon as he said I could wear mother of pearl and be a mermaid warrior, I said I’m done… please. If there’s one thing I have to do in my life, it has to be me. Because you have to have fun.”
During a press tour for Aquaman, Momoa told 9Honey that his favorite part of the film was a certain scene involving him and Kidman. “I think the scene where I see my mother for the first time gives me goosebumps. It was a tough scene, even if it doesn’t look like it,” he said. “Because in kill mode you run up the beach to save your wife and then turn around and it’s your mother.” Despite the complicated scene, Momoa said Kidman did a great job. “Getting away from those two different energies was a challenge, but Nicole just pulled it off.”
While Kidman’s acting talent certainly comes as no surprise, one can’t help but wonder what it was like for Momoa to work with her.
Jason Momoa loved working with Nicole Kidman
Like many of her previous co-stars, Jason Momoa has a high regard for Nicole Kidman and admits he’s a huge fan of the Australian actress and her work. The “Aquaman” star gushed over Kidman in a 2018 interview with SciFiNow Magazine, saying he had “one of the greatest acting experiences” directing the film with her. He also admitted that he was nervous about working with Kidman in the film because of her stellar success in Hollywood. “I was really scared because I was like, ‘Oh my god, she’s so amazing,'” he said (via Female First). “I’ve never worked with anyone close to an Oscar.”
On working with Kidman, Momoa said he was particularly impressed with her acting process – seeing the Oscar-winning actress approach each scene expertly and deliver a flawless performance every time. “It was just beautiful,” he said. “She was so intelligent with her choices and it was cool.”
Speaking to ET Canada at San Diego Comic-Con 2018, Momoa described Kidman simply as one of the greatest actors he has ever worked with. “I’ve never seen anyone with such a work ethic,” he said, noting that they shot many takes “under extreme conditions.” Momoa added: “It was just beautiful to watch. I almost feel like a spectator because we are so close just watching them. She’s a pro.”
The casting of Nicole Kidman in “Aquaman” caused some controversy
Despite her outstanding performance as Aquaman’s mother, Atlanna, Nicole Kidman’s casting in “Aquaman” hasn’t come without criticism. Many DC fans pointed out the age difference between her and lead actor Jason Momoa – Momoa was 39 and Kidman was 51 when the film was released. Speaking to Variety in 2018, Kidman said she wasn’t bothered by comments that she was too young to play Momoa’s mother. “Everything evens out in the world of superheroes,” she said, before pointing out, “Atlanna doesn’t really age.”
Kidman explained how she got into Aquaman and revealed that it was director James Wan who convinced her to take on the project. “I knew James Wan was going to do something really interesting and really funny, and I’ve wanted to work with him since he got his start in low-budget horror in Australia,” Kidman said, noting that she’s followed Wan’s career closely. Aside from Aquaman, Wan is also known for his work in the horror film series Saw, Insidious, and The Conjuring. The actress added: “[Wan] showed me some of the drawings [he was] to do, and he said, ‘Look, that’s why you have to be in the movie, because I drew her to look like you.'”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Kidman and Momoa will be reunited in the upcoming sequel Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, which Wan will also direct. They are joined in the follow-up by original cast members Patrick Wilson and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, along with a special appearance from Ben Affleck as Batman. The film is scheduled to hit theaters on December 25, 2023.