Nicole Kidman is reportedly taking a two months break from shooting TV show “Expats” in Hong Kong, leaving behind her crew to film the remainder of the scenes as she rests at home in Australia.
The pressure of filming on the city’s packed, narrow streets was too much for the Hollywood star, according to a local media report, which added that Kidman is used to working in more spacious environments with more privacy.
The cast’s multi-day shooting in Mong Kok’s Ladies’ Market attracted crowds of curious passersby. With limited space, only a small tent was set up for Kidman as a rest station, a far cry from the roomy trailers commonly arranged for cast and crew to freshen up while filming overseas.
Kidman, who arrived in Hong Kong mid-August, was originally meant to stay till October, according to local media.
The cast will stay on to film scenes without Kidman, and the production team is rejiggering shooting schedules in her absence.
Kidman’s abrupt departure comes after reports of a falling out with “Expats” director Lulu Wang. According to local media, Kidman had an argument with Wang while filming a scene in a pet shop in Mong Kok on Sep. 26, after which filming was stalled.
There has been no lack of controversy around Kidman since the actress arrived in Hong Kong to commence filming of the Amazon series. Flying in from Australia less than a month ago, she was granted an exemption from the city’s quarantine regulations under conditions that she stick to a pre-approved itinerary.
Shortly after arriving, she was spotted shopping at a boutique in Central. Character descriptions in a casting call for the show on Facebook have been accused of portraying westerners more favorably compared to Hongkongers, and props like Chinese-style lanterns and birdcages were reportedly added to Ladies Market ahead of filming—ostensibly to play to western stereotypes of Asia.
Kidman will rest at home in Australia before flying to the UK to film “Aquaman 2,” local media reported. She is expected to return to Hong Kong in November.