Nicole Kidman Said She Used to Fib About Her Height to Seem Shorter

“I was told, ‘You won’t have a career. You’re too tall.’”

Nicole Kidman
(Image credit: Getty)

Today, Nicole Kidman proudly stands tall and embraces her 5’11’’ frame—but this wasn’t always the case.

Kidman recalled in an interview with “The Radio Times Podcast” (and per People) that early in her acting career, “I was told, ‘You won’t have a career. You’re too tall.’”

Kidman had already reached 5’10’’ by the time she was 13 years old. “I was called ‘storky,’” she said. “[People would say] ‘How’s the air up there?’ … [Now I get] ‘You’re so much taller than I thought,’ [and then] grappling with how high my heels should be. Whenever you go on the red carpet, they send the shoes, and the shoes are always so high. And I’m like, ‘Do they have a kitten heel?' … I’m just gonna be the tallest person—the giraffe!”

Kidman told the podcast that she used to lie and say she was 5’10 ½’’—and specifically recalled auditioning for Annie as part of a large open call and worrying that she would be cut early because of her height. “I had to talk my way through the door, ‘cause they were measuring you before you went in,” she said. “I was mortified.”

Kidman admitted that her height does “bother” her at times, like “when I’m acting and I want to be small … [but] there’s times when I appreciate it, when it’s related to what I’m doing [in my work]. I’m like, ‘Okay, I can use this now.’”

Nicole Kidman at an event

(Image credit: Getty Images)

And, she said, while she is “incredibly grateful to be healthy and walking around,” Kidman said she has “had knee issues and all sorts of things—partly ‘cause of my height.”

But any insecurity she feels is put into perspective when she thinks about her kids—Bella and Connor, whom she shares with ex-husband Tom Cruise, and Sunday and Faith, whom she shares with husband Keith Urban. “I tell my daughters none of it matters,” Kidman said. “What matters is how you allow other people to either say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to you, and whether you accept that. … That inner resilience, as a human being—that’s the superpower, really.”

Rachel Burchfield
Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.