Once relegated to decorative parts for years and long acknowledged as the wife of Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman spent the latter half of the 1990s and the first decade of the new millennium earning much-deserved critical respect. Standing a willowy 5'11" and sporting one of Hollywood's most distinctive heads of frizzy red hair, the Australian actress first entered the American mindset with her role opposite Cruise in Days of Thunder (1990), but it wasn't until she starred as a homicidal weather girl in Gus Van Sant's 1995 To Die For that she achieved recognition as a thespian of considerable range and talent.
Though many assume that the heavily-accented Kidman hails from down under, she was actually born in Honolulu, Hawaii, on June 20, 1967, to Australian parents. Her family, who lived on the island because of a research project that employed Kidman's biochemist father, then moved to Washington, D.C. for the next three years. After her father's project reached completion, Nicole and her family returned to Australia.