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Nicole Kidman Visits Children's Hospital

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Nicole Kidman paid a visit to a children's hospital ward Thursday ahead of her celebrity wedding, taking her son and daughter with ex-husband Tom Cruise along shortly after they arrived in Australia for the weekend ceremony.

Isabella, 13, and Connor, 11, were the latest notables to arrive in Australia for the Oscar-winning actress's star-studded marriage, arriving in a private jet from Tokyo where they were accompanying Cruise on a publicity trip, Australian media reported.

The children were driven into the luxurious mansion on Sydney Harbor that Kidman and Cruise once shared, accompanied by their grandmother Janelle, and left soon afterward with Kidman to visit the Sydney Children's Hospital.

Kidman, her mother and the two children spent about two hours visiting the hospital's oncology, hematology and neurology wards, spending time chatting with patients and officials.

"I was stunned she came in today," said Sydney Children's Hospital Foundation chief executive Elizabeth Crundall. "To actually take the time out from her own wedding for a couple of hours was stunning, extraordinary and wonderful."

A kerfuffle broke out as photographers, camera crews and fans jostled for position as Kidman and her entourage left the hospital, blocking one of the exits at one point.

"If everyone can just not get too dangerous," Kidman said.

Kidman has reportedly asked wedding guests to donate to charity rather than buy gifts.

Kidman is set to marry country music star Keith Urban in a lavish wedding this weekend. Details have been carefully guarded, but local media have widely tipped Sunday night for the event.

"King Kong" star Naomi Watts, a longtime friend of Kidman's, arrived Wednesday and was among those at a women-only party to celebrate the coming nuptials. Urban was holding his bachelor party Thursday night.

The guest list reportedly also includes Oscar winner Russell Crowe, "X-Men" star Hugh Jackman, media mogul Rupert Murdoch and his wife Wendi Deng, and Murdoch's Sydney-based son Lachlan and his wife, model Sarah O'Hare.

It is the first marriage for Urban, 38, and the second for Kidman, 39. Cruise ended their 10-year union in 2001, but they share custody of their adopted children.

Kidman — who was born in Hawaii but raised in Australia — won an Oscar for her role in the 2002 film "The Hours." Urban, who was born in New Zealand but also grew up in Australia, won a Grammy in 2005 for best male country vocal performance.

Work continued Thursday on erecting a marquee at a gothic-style sandstone Catholic church in the beach-side suburb of Manly — the presumed location of the wedding.


Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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