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Russell Crowe

Russell CroweAKA Russell Ira Crowe

Born: 7-Apr-1964
Birthplace: Wellington, New Zealand

Gender: Male
Religion: See Note [1]
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Actor

Nationality: Australia
Executive summary: A Beautiful Mind

Russell Crowe is of Norwegian and Maori ancestry, and was born in New Zealand, but his family moved to Australia when he was four years old. His parents were caterers for film and television productions. They often brought young Russell with them to work, and he was pressed into work as an extra at the age of six. He had his first credited role in the down-under espionage series Spyforce, when he was eight.

Crowe first became moderately famous as a rock musician in his late teens, and his first low-level hit was titled "I Want to Be Like Marlon Brando". His cousins, Martin and Jeff Crowe, are well-known New Zealand cricket players, so young Crowe was often referred to as "the singing cousin of the cricketing Crowes". At 17, he dumped his famous last name and performed as "Russ le Roq". Even as le Roq, though, he quickly earned a reputation for being "tough as sandpaper" with the press and public.

He returned to acting with stage productions of Grease, Blood Brothers, and The Rocky Horror Show. He was briefly a semi-regular in the long-running Aussie soap opera Neighbours, but has said he only took the role to meet the series' then-star, Kylie Minogue. He was cast as a lawyer on Australian TV's Living with the Law, and made his feature debut with the war drama Blood Oath in 1990. He first came to American attention as an Australian skinhead in the 1992 film Romper Stomper. His first successful American film was L.A. Confidential in 1997, with fellow Australian Guy Pearce. He was Oscar-nominated for The Insider and A Beautiful Mind, and won for Gladiator.

While filming Gladiator, Crowe reportedly went to great lengths to avoid speaking with anyone in the cast or crew except while the cameras were rolling. For Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, everyone on the set was instructed to address him as "Captain". On the set of The Cinderella Man, Crowe reportedly got into a fist-fight with his bodyguard, and bit the man's ear. During a publicity interview for Robin Hood in 2010, he stormed off the set when a BBC reporter inquired about his odd accent in the film.

Crowe has sung, played guitar, and toured with his band, Thirty Odd Foot of Grunts. In 2005, he released a solo album.


[1] Paul Giamatti, "Russell Crowe: From growing up in his father's pubs to brawling, bristling and brilliance", Interview magazine, May 2005. When asked by Giamatti if he were religious, Crowe gave the answer: "My mom and dad were both baptized, but I was never christened, which was a pretty big deal in New Zealand in 1964. When it came time for christening, my mom said, "Look, I was christened in the Church of England, and my stepfather forced me to go to a Catholic church. My husband was christened in the Church of England. But we think that our sons, when they're old enough, should make that decision themselves." Growing up, we always had this odd relationship with the church. Though we didn't really go as a family, my mother was totally fine with the idea of me going to church on my own, so I'd go and have a look at a Catholic service or a Presbyerian service or an Anglican service. I went to a temple. The Baha'i faith is something I looked at as well. Although I wasn't brought up in a religious household, I'm a very inquisitive person about it, and, just the same as with my acting, I've taken things from various sources that mean something to me. I couldn't tell you that I follow a particular doctrine, but in terms of spirituality, I think there's a karmic cycle, which is very, very obvious: You run around acting like a dick, and you get your ass kicked. The world just works that way."

Father: Alex Crowe (caterer)
Mother: Jocelyn Crowe (caterer)
Brother: Terry Crowe (older)
Girlfriend: Jamie O'Neal (australian stage actress, b. 1968, dated in 1988)
Girlfriend:
Sharon Stone (dated in late 1990s)
Slept with: Meg Ryan (affair in 2000)
Slept with: Courtney Love (2001, widely reported but denied by both parties)
Girlfriend: Erica Baxter (Australian model, dated in 2000)
Wife: Danielle Spencer (actress, dated 1991-95 and 2002-03, m. 7-Apr-2003, two sons)
Son: Charles Spencer Crowe (b. 21-Dec-2003)
Son: Tennyson Spencer Crowe (b. 7-Jul-2006)

    High School: Sydney Boys High School, Sydney, Australia
    High School: Mount Roskill Grammar School

    Assault allegedly struck Mercer Hotel employee with a phone, Manhattan 6-Jun-2005
    Oscar for Best Actor 2001 for Gladiator
    Golden Globe 2002 for A Beautiful Mind
    Hollywood Walk of Fame 6801 Hollywood Blvd. (12-Apr-2010)
    Wedding: Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes (2006)
    Irish Ancestry
    Maori Ancestry
    Norwegian Ancestry
    Risk Factors: Smoking

    FILMOGRAPHY AS ACTOR
    Noah (10-Mar-2014)
    Winter's Tale (13-Feb-2014)
    Man of Steel (12-Jun-2013)
    Broken City (18-Jan-2013)
    Les MisÚrables (5-Dec-2012)
    The Man with the Iron Fists (2-Nov-2012)
    The Next Three Days (17-Nov-2010) · John Brennan
    Robin Hood (12-May-2010) · Robin Longstride
    State of Play (17-Apr-2009)
    Tenderness (15-Jan-2009) · Lt. Cristofuoro
    Body of Lies (5-Oct-2008)
    American Gangster (19-Oct-2007)
    3:10 to Yuma (7-Sep-2007)
    Bra Boys (15-Mar-2007) · Himself [VOICE]
    A Good Year (9-Sep-2006)
    Cinderella Man (3-Jun-2005)
    Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (14-Nov-2003) · Capt. Jack Aubrey
    A Beautiful Mind (13-Dec-2001)
    Proof of Life (4-Dec-2000) · Terry Thorne
    Gladiator (1-May-2000) · Maximus
    The Insider (5-Nov-1999)
    Mystery, Alaska (1-Oct-1999)
    Breaking Up (17-Oct-1997) · Steve
    L.A. Confidential (19-Sep-1997) · Bud White
    Heaven's Burning (6-Sep-1997)
    Rough Magic (7-Sep-1995)
    Virtuosity (4-Aug-1995) · Sid 6.7
    No Way Back (13-May-1995)
    The Quick and the Dead (10-Feb-1995) · Cort
    The Sum of Us (10-Sep-1994)
    For the Moment (Oct-1993)
    The Silver Brumby (16-Sep-1993)
    Hammers Over the Anvil (Feb-1993)
    Romper Stomper (16-Sep-1992)
    The Efficiency Expert (23-Jan-1992) · Kim
    Brides of Christ (4-Sep-1991)
    Proof (15-Aug-1991)
    The Crossing (18-Oct-1990)
    Prisoners of the Sun (26-Jul-1990)

Appears on the cover of:
Time, 10-Nov-2003, DETAILS: Crowe In Command -- From tabloid bad boy to Hollywood's most versatile superstar -- an inside look at the world of Russell Crowe and his stirring new sea epic (photo as Jack Aubrey, Master and Commander)
Entertainment Weekly, 22-Aug-2003, DETAILS: An Exclusive Interview with Master and Commander's Russell Crowe -- "I owe you my best work, but I don't owe you a good attitude."


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