‘Being the Ricardos’: Trailer, cast and everything we know about the Nicole Kidman movie

Being the Ricardos
(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

One of the biggest Hollywood stars of today, Nicole Kidman, is taking on a true Hollywood legend in Lucille Ball in the latest movie by writer/director Aaron Sorkin, Being the Ricardos.

If you perhaps don’t recognize the name Lucille Ball by name, you will almost certainly know the TV show that gave her icon status, I Love Lucy. Revolutionary in the 1950s not only for its comedy but also for featuring Ball’s real-life husband Desi Arnaz as her TV husband Ricky Ricardo, I Love Lucy is an entertainment touchstone, which will get the big screen treatment for the first time in this new movie.

Here is everything that you need to know about Being the Ricardos.

Nicole Kidman in ‘Being the Ricardos’ 

Being the Ricardos Nicole Kidman

(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

Nicole Kidman is one of the most respected and recognizable actresses working in Hollywood today. Already an Academy Award-winner (and multiple time nominee), she already has plenty of buzz on another potential nomination for her role as Lucille Ball in Being the Ricardos.

We’ve gotten some of our best looks at Kidman as Lucy in the most recent trailer (see below) for Being the Ricardos, sporting her iconic red-hair and clips of re-enacting some of the classic comedy bits from the show. But, the film certainly looks to be dealing with much of the drama that went in Ball’s life off camera, which is where Kidman will likely truly shine.

Who else is in the ‘Being the Ricardos’ cast?

You can’t have Lucy without her Ricky, and in Being the Ricardos Oscar-winner Javier Bardem will be taking on the role of Desi Arnaz. The Oscar-winning Spanish actor will take on the famous Cuban band leader and actor. Bardem isn’t a particularly close resemblance to what Arnaz looked like when I Love Lucy was on TV, but there are few doubts that Bardem can match Kidman as one half of the famous couple.

The other two main actors on the I Love Lucy show, William Frawley and Vivian Vance, will also be heavily featured in the movie and played by J.K. Simmons and Nina Arianda, respectively.

Elsewhere, the Being the Ricardos cast will consist of Ali Shawkat, Jake Lacy, Tony Hale, Clark Gregg and Linda Lavin.

Who is director Aaron Sorkin?

Aaron Sorkin is one of the most well known writers for TV and movies of the last 30 years. His list of writing credits include A Few Good Men, The West Wing, The Social Network and The Newsroom. He has branched out into directing over the last few years, most notably with 2020's The Trial of the Chicago 7.

What is the ‘Being the Ricardos’ plot?

The show I Love Lucy was all about the quirky Lucy and all of the hilarious misadventures she would get into with her friend Ethel and husband Ricky. But of course things weren’t always so picture perfect behind the scenes, and that is what Being the Ricardos is going to focus on.

The official synopsis says that the movie “Follows Lucy and Desi as they face a crisis that could end their careers and another that could end their marriage.”

While that is intentionally vague, what we can gather from the trailer and just general history is that the movie is likely to focus on the time in Lucy’s career when she was being questioned for potential ties to the Communist party at the height of the Red Scare while also dealing with Desi’s rumored infidelities.

When is the ‘Being the Ricardos’ release date?

Being the Ricardos was released in theaters on Dec. 10, but it is also now available to stream exclusively on Prime Video.

'Being the Ricardos' reviews

The reviews are in for Being the Ricardos, but it appears that everyone is just so-so for Lucy. What to Watch's Leigh Monson praised the performances in his Being the Ricardos review, particularly Nicole Kidman, but says that writer/director Aaron Sorkin makes some choices that hurt the end result.

Overall, Being the Ricardos currently sits at a 68% "Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes and 55 on Metacritic.

Is there a ‘Being the Ricardos’ trailer?

Yes, as we’ve mentioned a few times before, Amazon has released a trailer for Being the Ricardos that offers a pretty good look at what’s in store. This is actually a second trailer for the film, following a teaser trailer released in October. This new one, which is available below, gives us the best look yet and both Kidman and Bardem as Lucy and Desi, and many of the plot elements of the movie. 

How to watch ‘I Love Lucy’ TV show

Before you watch Being the Ricardos, the original I Love Lucy sitcom is also available to stream for anyone interested in either discovering or re-watching the great Lucille Ball in one of the historic U.S. TV shows of all time.

Episodes from all six seasons are available to stream on Paramount Plus (I Love Lucy was originally a CBS production) and Hulu, however there are a handful of missing episodes from the series’ run on both services.

If you are interested in finding the complete series, there are I Love Lucy DVD/Blu-ray collections available for purchase via services like Amazon Prime.

Michael Balderston

Michael Balderston is a DC-based entertainment and assistant managing editor for What to Watch, who has previously written about the TV and movies with TV Technology, Awards Circuit and regional publications. Spending most of his time watching new movies at the theater or classics on TCM, some of Michael's favorite movies include Casablanca, Moulin Rouge!, Silence of the Lambs, Children of Men, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest and Star Wars. On the TV side he enjoys Only Murders in the Building, Yellowstone, The Boys, Game of Thrones and is always up for a Seinfeld rerun. Follow on Letterboxd.