The duo stars in the upcoming movie from writer Aaron Sorkin that details a particularly eventful week in the life of the couple who were married on-screen and off while working on the show “I Love Lucy” from 1951 to 1957. To promote the film’s Dec. 10 release, the duo has been discussing in-depth what it was like to both learn about their real-life counterparts as well as capture the unparalleled chemistry they had together.
“I mean, all of it. All of it,” Kidman said when asked by CBS Sunday Morning what surprised her about Lucille Ball. “The way [she and Desi] built a production company, how they were such a team. I didn’t know how clever she was, how she’d always say she wasn’t funny. So, I mean, you name it, I didn’t know it!”
Bardem, meanwhile, noted that he was struck by the “powerful love story” at the heart of one of America’s most beloved sitcoms.
Javier Bardem and Nicole Kidman will star together in ‘Being the Ricardos.’ (Photo by J. Vespa/WireImage via Getty Images)
Between these two people that created this amazing show, and the price you have to pay for that in some ways, they were exposing themselves in a way,” he explained.
As for capturing the real-life chemistry the two shared, Bardem noted in an interview with The “Today” show’s “Sunday Sitdown” that, due to the movie’s schedule, he and Kidman weren’t able to really get to know each other outside their characters.
circa 1955: Portrait of American actor and comedian Lucille Ball (1911-1989) and her husband, Cuban-born actor and bandleader Desi Arnaz (1917-1986), holding heart-shaped cutouts. (Photo by ) (CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images)
“We didn’t have much time to rehearse or be together or gather together before shooting,” Bardem explained. “We didn’t even have time to meet as Nicole and Javier. We were, like, right on Lucy and Desi.”
Nicole Kidman (left) with play Lucille Ball while Javier Bardem (right) will play Desi Arnaz in the upcoming movie ‘Being the Ricardos.’ (Getty Images)
“It was my obsession to get it absolutely accurate,” she explained. “It was [writer/director Aaron Sorkin’s] obsession to have this human being portrayed – what’s behind the creation of Lucy Ricardo and who is the woman behind this character?”