Entertainment & Arts

Nicole Kidman to return to London stage after 17 years

Nicole Kidman and Rosalind Franklin Image copyright Reuters/Science Photo Library
Image caption Kidman will star in Photograph 51 as British scientist Rosalind Franklin

Nicole Kidman is to return to the London stage, 17 years on from her critically acclaimed West End debut.

The Australian actress will play scientist Rosalind Franklin in the UK premiere of Photograph 51, directed by Michael Grandage.

The play, by Anna Ziegler, will open at the Noel Coward Theatre on 14 September and run until 21 November.

Kidman's work in The Blue Room at the Donmar Warehouse in 1998 was famously described as "pure theatrical Viagra".

In Photograph 51, Kidman will portray British scientist Rosalind Franklin, the only woman involved in the discovery of DNA's double helix in 1953.

Her name was left out of the history books and she only received recognition years after her death.

The production will reunite Kidman with Grandage, with whom she recently collaborated on the feature film Genius.

It marks the return of Grandage's company to the West End, following an acclaimed run in 2013 and 2014 that saw Jude Law play Henry V and Daniel Radcliffe appear in The Cripple of Inishmaan.

'Nervous'

In 2001 Kidman spoke to the BBC of her desire to return to the London stage, calling The Blue Room "the best experience I've ever had".

But she admitted then that she was "nervous to come back as there will be such expectation".

Kidman received rave reviews for her role in The Blue Room alongside co-star Iain Glen.

The pair were the only people on stage in an erotic comedy - written by Sir David Hare and directed by Sam Mendes - that saw both stars appear naked during the performance.

Last year Kidman told the Daily Mail she was in discussions to appear in two plays in London, with one reported to be Turgenev's A Month in the Country.

"I'm determined to make at least one of the proposals work," she said. "Who knows? Both of the proposals might come together."

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