If Darth Vader wore a blond wig, a slinky dress and a dab of Chanel behind each ear, he could hardly be as evil as Nicole Kidman, playing the gorgeous villainess Mrs Coulter in this spectacular new movie version of Northern Lights, the opening episode of Philip Pullman's fantasy series His Dark Materials.
Pullman reportedly suggested Kidman for the role. Even if he hadn't, Kidman herself would have been kicking her agent's door in to get it. This is the very best sort of part for her: statuesque, elegant, seductive, with a hint of cold steel. In many ways, it's her juiciest character since the sociopathic meteorologist in To Die For.