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Sep 9 2004

Lauren Bacall's catty outburst over the movie status of co-star Nicole

By Anita Singh

MOVIE icon Lauren Bacall got her claws out yesterday after being compared to co-star Nicole Kidman.

The 79-year-old lost her cool when the Australian Oscar-winner, 37, was described as 'another screen legend'.

In an interview with GMTV Scot Jenni Falconer, Bacall snapped: 'She's not a legend. She's a beginner.

'She can't be a legend at whatever age she is. You have to be older.'

The stars were in Venice to promote their new film Birth, in which Bacall plays Kidman's mother. Tension between them was evident at a Press conference when it quickly became clear journalists only had questions for Kidman.

As the veteran was ignored, Kidman pleaded: 'Please ask somebody else.'

But when an inquiry finally did come Bacall's way, she refused to answer, saying: 'It's not a fascinating question.

No offence.' Despite appearances, she insisted she got along famously with her co-star.

They acted together before, with Bacall supporting Kidman in last year's Dogville.

She said: 'I love working with a young actress. Nicole and I worked on Dogville and were friends when this started.

'That laid the groundwork for our fabulous relationship on screen and off.'

Tensions continued when a preview of Birth was met with a chorus of boos.

The film shows Kidman kissing - and in a bath with - a 10-year-old boy she thinks is the reincarnation of her husband.

The root of the problem between the women may be simple jealousy.

Both became household names as wives of film icons - Kidman was married to Tom Cruise and Bacall to Humphrey Bogart.

However, Kidman received acclaim and two Golden Globe wins for films including To Die For, The Others, Cold Mountain plus an Oscar for The Hours.

Bacall has never won an Oscar despite starring in 53 films in her 60-year career.

She famously looked furious after losing out on her only nomination - for best supporting actress in 1997 - to English Patient star Juliette Binoche.

And she is known for being difficult - she was suspended by Warner Brothers12times in the 1950s for refusing roles.

She first starred in To Have And Have Not aged 19 in 1944.

In 1995, Empire magazine voted her sixth sexiest star ever.


HOLLYWOOD is notorious for its star bust-ups.

The rivalry between Bette Davis and Joan Crawford reached its peak when they starred in the 1962 hit What Ever Happened To Baby Jane?.

Davis later said of Crawford: 'She's slept with every male star except Lassie.'

Crawford hit back: 'Davis built a career out of a set of mannerisms, instead of real acting ability.'

Interest in America's Sweethearts in 2002 soared with tales Catherine Zeta--Jones and Julia Roberts rowed. But the Welsh beauty always denied this.

Action flick Charlie's Angels was branded the production from hell with claims Drew Barrymore, Lucy Liu and Cameron Diaz fought over who'd wear the sexiest clothes.

Even the TV hit Sex And The City was clouded by tales of back-biting between Kim Cattrall, Kristin Davis, Cynthia Nixon and Sarah Jessica Parker Nixon recently admitted: 'We're women and we've had disagreements.'


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