By Joey Nolfi
October 17, 2018 at 09:04 AM EDT
12/25/18
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She donned bouncy brunette bangs en route to an Oscar nod in Lion before rocking springy blonde curls in this year’s Academy Awards hopeful Boy Erased, but the Nicole Kidmanaissance (and its accompanying set of wigs) is taking a dark detour through the gritty streets of Los Angeles’ criminal underworld in the first full-length trailer for the actress’ upcoming drama Destroyer.

Annapurna Pictures released Wednesday the first preview for the Australian performer’s potential Oscar bid, for which the 51-year-old underwent a dramatic physical transformation to star as an LAPD detective grappling with violent secrets from her past as they slowly creep into the present.

The film sets the stage several years prior, when young officer Erin Bell (Kidman) infiltrated a gang deeply embedded in the California desert. The mission ended in tragedy, however, and ultimately catalyzed the up-and-coming cop’s eventual spiral into emotional torment when the gang’s leader (Toby Kebbell) later re-emerges as Bell investigates an unexplained murder.

“I grew up on these kind of films. I watched [Al] Pacino play these roles, I watched all of the men in the ‘70s get the chance to do it, but I don’t have a female [equivalent]. That’s exciting as an actress to get the chance to do that,” Kidman told EW of the film at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival. “This character is also so far removed from me, so that’s part of the appeal as an actor: going to places I haven’t been given the chance to go. I’m all about finding characters and stories that [make me] go, ‘This is new, but it’s still emotionally relevant.’”

The film could, however, re-visit familiar territory for its Academy Award-winning star in that her leading performance has drummed up considerable Oscar buzz following its positive reception on the fall festival circuit in Telluride and Toronto.

Destroyer — also starring Orphan Black‘s Tatiana Maslany, Sebastian Stan, Bradley Whitford, and Nickelodeon’s School of Rock actress Jade Pettyjohn  — is set for theatrical release on Dec. 25. Watch the film’s first trailer above.

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