Lucille Ball’s daughter Lucie Arnaz was won over by Nicole Kidman’s portrayal of her mom in the upcoming biopic “Being the Ricardos.”
Arnaz talked candidly in an interview published this week in Palm Springs Life about what it was like to see her late mom, star of the legendary 1950s sitcom “I Love Lucy,” reanimated by Academy Award winner Kidman.
“Nicole did a spectacular job,” said Arnaz, who said she’d seen two days of filming in which Kidman portrayed Ball “in the late-’30s and mid-’40s.”
“Boy, what she did was astounding,” Arnaz said. “She’s got such poise and class.”
Arnaz emphasized that Kidman didn’t get the role because of any physical resemblance to Ball, known for her curly red hair and perpetually red pout.
“Nobody was cast because they look exactly like somebody,” she said. “They were cast because they’re spectacular performers, actors, and they can capture the basic essence of what has been written in this script.”
The film, directed by Aaron Sorkin, of course also follows Arnaz’s father, Desi Arnaz (played by Javier Bardem), and his life with Ball, as well as their time on “I Love Lucy.” Ball died in 1989 at age 77. Arnaz died three years earlier at 69.
The younger Arnaz said Sorkin took “some theatrical license” with the couple’s story and crammed “a couple of true events that did happen, they just didn’t happen at the same time.” But overall, she said, viewers can expect to “learn a lot about what it was like back then.”
“His dialogue is always incredible. And I think he treated my mother and my father really well,” she said of Sorkin. “I think they are accurate composites of these people. And what I’ve seen of it … was extraordinarily classy and first rate. The people that he has cast are just really great performers.”
“Being the Ricardos” also stars Tony Hale, Alia Shawkat, Jake Lacy, and J.K. Simmons. The film is described on IMDb as a story that “follows Lucy and Desi as they face a crisis that could end their careers and another that could end their marriage.”
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