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The Graham Norton Show

BBC One and BBC Two chat show hosted by Graham Norton. 433 episodes (28 series), 2007 - 2021. Stars Graham Norton.

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Series 16, Episode 9 - Nicole Kidman, Julie Walters, Hugh Bonneville, Take That

Nicole Kidman says singing terrifies her, Julie Walters reprises Mrs Overall, Hugh Bonneville hints at Downton Christmas special and Take That talk about life without Jason.

Further details

Nicole Kidman, talking about Moulin Rouge and an injury she sustained on set, says, "I hurt myself, not on the trapeze, but dancing in heels at three in the morning and I fell downstairs. I then re-broke my rib getting into a corset. I had this thing that I wanted to get my waist down to 18 inches, which Vivian Leigh had on Gone With The Wind and I was just like, 'tighter, tighter!'"

Talking about her new movie Paddington, which she describes as "Adorable and funny," Nicole, who plays the villain, says, "I was like, 'Great, finally I'm in a film my kids can see,' and then I realised maybe they can't come and see it because I am chasing a bear with knives - confusing for a three-year old because they thought I was playing the bear's mummy! I had to let them down gently."

Revealing she actually learned to throw knives for the part, Nicole says, "I got obsessed and then they ended up cutting it out of the movie because it was too frightening. I can do a lot more than what's in the film. I actually recorded myself turning the knife in my hand and when I watched it back even I thought, 'Wow!'"

Asked about her other films and what lengths she goes to for roles, she talks about learning Russian for Birthday Girl, but dispels one myth, "I didn't learn to castrate bulls for Australia, that's not true. I've never castrated anything!"

Talking about singing with Robbie Williams, she says, "I was so shy and I had to do the harmonies which was really hard for me. He was really nice to me and suddenly it was done." Asked if she might ever do a duet with her husband Keith Urban, she says, "No. I'm really good at listening to music and I love music but I'll stick to the acting. Moulin Rouge was really hard for me because singing is not something that comes naturally to me. It is so frightening to have to sing in front of people. I get terrified."

Hugh Bonneville, who plays Mr Brown in the new film, says he's a great Paddington fan, "It was a childhood favourite of mine. Mum and Dad used to read the stories to me and then when I was a bit older I used to read the stories to myself. He was my pal and I wanted to eat marmalade with him in London," adding jokingly, "I was quite a lonely child."

On the controversy that surrounded the film's PG rating, Hugh says, "I think it was a slow news day. Of course, the bear is put in peril and he crosses the ocean in a container ship and has worrying marmalade habits, but seriously, if you've got a young, sensitive child and you take him to the movies, of course it's important you know the sort of things that are happening. The 'sexual references,' which was code red was downgraded to 'innuendo,' and that's largely to do with me in a frock!"

Describing Downton Abbey's Christmas Special as "Very heart-warming." Hugh refuses to be drawn on the plot line but adds, "You'll have a lump in your throat, but in a very nice way."

Talking about the controversy around Isis the dog dying, he says, "Isis is a very unfortunate name at the moment but it got a bit daft that people genuinely thought we'd reacted in some way to world events. It shows a slight lack of understanding of how TV shows are made. Back in the nice days before we'd heard the acronym I mentioned to Julian Fellows that the dog was getting on a bit and he said he would think about it. I'm not giving any spoilers, I'm just mentioning there is a story-line involving the dog that was developed a year ago."

Julie Walters, who stars in Paddington as Mrs Bird, reveals she wasn't so aware of the bear, "I kind of knew who he was, but I'd never read any of the stories," adding with tongue in cheek, "When they said, do you want to play the extremely attractive, sexually magnetic housekeeper, well, I couldn't turn it down!" Talking about the inspiration for her character she says, "I based it on the makeup artist who made me up for the film - he is camp and Scottish! It got more and more like him as the shoot went on."

Modestly talking about winning her eighth BAFTA award - more than any other actress - she says, "It was a 'Fellowship' award, it's nice they call it that because it used to be called, 'Lifetime Achievement,' and before that, 'Obituary!'"

Despite her success, Julie reveals she is not always recognised, "People do confuse me with other folk some times. A couple of years ago I was in café and as I walked past a table I heard one woman say, 'That's Julie Andrews.' As I was leaving she asked for my autograph so I signed it, 'Lots of love Julie Andrews,' and went out humming, 'The Hills are Alive...'

Asked if she would like to be in Downton, Julie says, "Have I been asked? 'No' is the answer to that!" before auditioning with Nicole and Hugh for a below stairs role as her alter ego, Mrs Overall.

Gary Barlow, Mark Owen and Howard Donald join Graham for a chat.

Asked about the decision to continue as a band with just the three of them, Mark says, "We had reached a point when we knew we had to do something. We'd been writing all year with the hope J (Jason) would come in at the end. We did everything to try and convince him to change his mind but in the end we had to accept his decision. Every day we get a bit more used to it but it still feels a bit weird."

Gary says, "There had been a discussion about whether we should call it a day but I think it is because of the support out there that kept us going." Howard adds, "It's a sad thing and the door's always open for Jason to come back in."

Talking about their upcoming tour, Gary says, "We've always put on a big show. This will be no different. Being part of that show is amazing. It's going to be our biggest arena tour ever." Asked if it will be exhausting he says, "It'll be like bootcamp!"

Take That perform These Days live in the studio, before Graham pulls the lever on more foolhardy audience members brave enough to sit in the Red Chair.

Broadcast details

Friday 28th November 2014
50 minutes

Cast & crew

Regular cast
Graham Norton Host / Presenter
Guest cast
Julie Walters Guest
Gary Barlow Guest
Hugh Bonneville Guest
Nicole Kidman Guest
Mark Owen Guest
Howard Donald Guest
Writing team
Rob Colley Writer
Dan Gaster Writer
Production team
Steve Smith Director
Jon Magnusson Series Producer
Rina Dayalji Producer
Pete Snell Producer
Graham Stuart Executive Producer


Nicole Kidman discusses Robbie Williams

Nicole chats about working with Robbie Williams and being scared of singing in front of people.

Featuring: Graham Norton, Julie Walters, Hugh Bonneville, Nicole Kidman.

Take That talk to tribute band

Graham and Take That chat to the take that tribute band Rule The World.

Featuring: Graham Norton, Gary Barlow, Mark Owen, Howard Donald.


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