Crushable Quotable: The Paperboy Director Says Nicole Kidman ‘Gave Him Her Soul,’ Zac Efron Is ‘Pure And Hungry’

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Zac Efron "pure and hungry" The Paperboy Nicole Kidman "gave me her soul" Lee Daniels quote

I should have known I was in for a treat when Precious director Lee Daniels kicked off this interview with MTV News by saying that his new project The Paperboy is “gangster.” In case neither of those names are ringing a bell, this is the movie where Nicole Kidman pees on Zac Efron. Yeah, now your memory is jogged, and I bet you're as eager as I was to hear what Daniels has to say about the whole shebang. He's definitely pushing the whole “this is my ART” angle with the movie, despite the gasps of shock at early screenings. And hey, Precious won two Oscars — though not for the categories that Daniels himself was nominated for — so you can imagine he's feeling pretty confident about his next project.

In fact, that seems to be why he chose this… shall we say “daring” tale of two brothers (Matthew McConaughey and Zac) who team up to try and prove the innocence of a death row inmate (John Cusack). Along the way, they encounter Kidman's hot mess of a woman who's been writing steamy love letters to Cusack. As you can see from the photo above (and others here), she's laying it on thick with the teased blonde hair, eye makeup, and minidresses.

But Daniels makes it sound like she's given herself up for sacrifice. The whole interview is worth reading, since he talks about how with him actors know that they're free of boundaries, that they can be “brave” and “trust” each other. When asked if he knew that the peeing scene would be what we bloggers latched on to, he said,

“Instinctively, yes, but I felt that I owed it to Nicole, the actress who gave me her soul. I had the choice of taking it out. I had no idea that they would latch onto it the way they are. After Precious, I could have done any film I wanted to do, pretty much. I was offered a lot of films. I chose this film because it was unexpected of me, and I will continue to do films that are unexpected of me.”

Maybe because it's a Friday, but the part about her soul just cracked me up. (Also, Daniels should know that Tom Cruise already stole Nicole's soul a long time ago.) And then he comes up with some kinda-suggestive adjectives to describe Zac's performance:

“Zac was marvelous. He was pure and hungry and eager to please and anxious to deliver the performance that he did. I'm really proud of what he did. I think it's his best work. Tell those little old ladies that were screaming in the theater to go watch The Lucky One. They'll enjoy that.”

Honestly, I'm bummed that Daniels didn't have something similarly hyperbolic to say about McConaughey.

Photo: Millennium Entertainment via