More great roles for women, please - Nicole Kidman

Kidman and her co-star Reese Witherspoon star and produced the series ' Big Little Lies'.

Nicole Kidman in 'Big Little Lies'. Picture: HBO, courtesy of Showmax.

LOS ANGELES - HBO’s Big Little Lies was a big winner at last night’s Primetime Emmy Awards, winning Best Limited Series and four of the five main awards within the category: Best Director for Jean-Marc Vallée, Best Actress for Nicole Kidman, Best Supporting Actress for Laura Dern, and Best Supporting Actor for Alexander Skarsgard.

Big Little Lies is an adaptation of Liane Moriarty’s bestselling book about marriage, motherhood and murder in upper-middle-class suburbia.

Kidman and her co-star Reese Witherspoon also produced the series. In their joint acceptance speech, Kidman paid tribute to their friendship.

“This is a friendship that then created opportunities. It created opportunities out of a frustration, because we weren’t getting offered great roles,” said Kidman, 50, who like Witherspoon has won Best Actress at both the Oscars and Golden Globes, so should really be able to pick and choose her roles by now. “So now, more great roles for women, please.”

Kidman also acknowledged her friend earlier in the night when collecting her award for Best Actress, which Witherspoon was also nominated for. “Reese, I share this with you. Without you, I would not be standing up here.”

“It’s been an incredible year for women in television,” said Witherspoon, referencing the dominance of female-centered shows on a night where The Handmaid’s Tale and _Veep _won Best Drama and Best Comedy respectively. “Bring women to the front of their own stories and make them the hero,” she encouraged the audience of TV stars and star-makers.

Accepting her Best Supporting Actress Emmy, Dern similarly acknowledged the historic scarcity of women in the industry. “I've been acting since I was 11 years old and I think I have worked with maybe 12 women, so I want to thank the television academy for honoring our show...” After thanking HBO and Vallée, she reserved a special shout-out to “Nicole and Reese's moms for not only giving us extraordinary women but really well-read women because that's how I'm getting parts. I share this with my tribe of four ladies. I feel very proud to be part of reflecting fierce women and mothers, finding their voice.”

Kidman plays Celeste, a lawyer turned full-time mother of twins in an abusive marriage with Perry (Skarsgard). “We’ve shown a light on domestic abuse,” she said, accepting her Best Actress awards. “It is a complicated, insidious disease. It exists far more than we allow ourselves to know. It is filled with shame and secrecy, and by you acknowledging me with this award, it shines a light on it even more.”

In all, Big Little Lies won eight awards from its 16 nominations, after three wins at The Creative Arts Emmys the weekend before for Casting, Music Supervision and Contemporary Costumes.

HBO’s The Night Of was the next biggest Limited Series winner at the Emmys, taking home five awards, including Best Actor for Riz Ahmed for his portrayal of a man who wakes up after a one-night stand with a stranger to find her murdered.

If you’ve been sleeping on two of the most acclaimed shows on TV, you can binge-watch both Big Little Lies and The Night Of on Showmax in Africa.

WATCH: Big Little Lies on Showmax

WATCH: The Night Of on Showmax

Written by Kevin Kriedemann.