A story about meeting Mr. Crowe
Several weeks ago I saw Gladiator and really loved it. While I was watching it I had a realization. I'm pretty sure that I met Russell Crowe. I had no idea who he was at the time I met him. In February I was waiting for my flight to be called at Gatwick Airport with my 3 year old son Ian. He's really active, simply cannot stand still, and he always wanders off, goes and starts to chat with kids and grownups, anyone practically. I've to be always on the lookout. Anyway while I was paying for some food at one of the cafes, Ian disappeared. When I looked around I saw him by a table a few meters away. A man was sitting there, reading a paper and smoking a cigarette, really seemed to be deep into the article he was reading. To my horror I saw Ian pick up the man's cup of coffee and prepare to take a sip. He loves coffee and my husband and I often find our coffee finished while we are looking away. All my efforts to teach him not to do this haven't worked so far.
I yelled to stop him and ran over, which startled both Ian and the man, and all the coffee was spilled right onto the man's trousers. He jumped up and I apologized profusely, and went back to the cafe to get some napkins to hand him. I was so embarrassed and upset that I didn't know what to do. He looked up and said: 'It's ok, it's ok. It wasn't hot anymore'. But he had coffee all down his lap! I couldn't believe he wasn't furious. And he had the most gorgeous blue eyes. I couldn't help noticing them even though I was mortified. Ian looked guilty and I could just see he was about to start one of his shrieking bouts, which he does whenever he wants something.
Then the man looked down at him and said something like "You all right, mate? How about a cup of tea? Much better for you, you know". From his accent, I could tell he was Australian. He had the widest most amazing smile and was absolutely charming. I continued to say how sorry I was, and tried to get going, leave the man alone, tugging at my son's hand and telling him we had to leave the man alone and go eat our sandwiches. But Ian was just looking at him. I was afraid I was going to have to pick Ian up and carry him away, which was going to lead to a lot of kicking and screaming, when the man said that he'd keep an eye on Ian while I got the sandwiches, which I had left at the cafe when I ran over.
While I brought the food around, my son had started talking, saying something about how he is going to go up in the sky, which is what I had told him about flying on an airplane. I said I was sorry once again, I explained how he likes to chatter, and the man cut in and said, 'No worries. Kids do that. It's great. I asked if he had kids, since he seemed so patient with them, and he said no but he hoped to and he hoped he'd still be patient then. We laughed about that, and I sat down, and we chatted for awhile. He asked where we were from, where we were going. He mentioned that he had ordered a piece of blueberry pie and it had disappeared somehow. He asked my son "Did you take my blueberry pie too?"
He told me his name, which meant nothing to me (in fact I thought he said his last name was "Krell"), and said he was an actor, and silly me, instead of asking him what he was in I said that he must be quite difficult for him, knowing how much some of my actor friends had to struggle. He drew a kangaroo on a napkin while my son was trying to say the word out loud. We chatted for a while and I don't remember everything because I didn't know I was talking with a big star, but one of the things I recall is that he said that when he was about Ian's age he threw up on James Joyce's sister. She was a nun in New Zealand, and his parents knew her and invited her once over to their house. They kept telling him to behave, and he got so nervous that when the lady finally came, he threw up all over her. After that his mother made a point to warn all new guests that they shouldn't get too close because he was a bit mental. (I remember that term because it was so funny that I used it myself later.)
We talked for about 15 minutes, and then my flight was called. He shook hands with Ian, and said something like "Take care mate, you have to come to Australia one day and see all the kangaroos," then turned to me and said "Lovely to meet you." As I was turning to go, he said very politely, "By the way, is this supposed to be on your skirt?" I looked down my backside, and saw a white paper plate stuck on my bottom. When I took it off the blueberry pie was still attached to it. In all the fuss the plate must have slipped from the table to the chair, and I had not looked at the chair and had sat down right on the pie. "That's my pie!" he said. I was mortified! We just looked at each other for a few seconds then roared with laughter. Without saying a word he made me feel not embarrassed, though I had several reasons to be, but rather like it was all such good fun, he completely overwhelmed me with his easygoing spirit and sense of humour. I wiped it off the best I could (this time he got napkins for me) and then we had to run, or we would have missed the plane. So I could say no more, just kept laughing all the way to the gate.
Until I saw Gladiator, I had only told my husband about this because there were so many embarrassing things in it. But now that I know who the nice man in the airport was, I've been telling more people. I wonder if he ever told anybody about me.
Source: People (US)
February 3, 2003
Russell Crowe may be engaged, but he's making some sweet music with someone else. The actor has a new album coming out in April with his band, 30 Odd Foot of Grunts, and one of the tracks features a duet with Chrissie Hynde. )
According to Australia's Undercover Music News, the "Gladiator" Oscar winner, 38, and Hynde, 51, met last year in London and she has invited his band to tour America with her and her band, the Pretenders, later this month. )
Their number together is called "Never Be Alone Again," to be featured on the Grunts' CD "Other Ways of Speaking," the band's follow-up album to their less-than-successful "Bastard Life of Clarity," which reportedly only sold 156 copies in its first week of release in England. )
Possibly to spur better sales for the new album, the band has changed its billing on the CD from simply, 30 Odd Foot of Grunts, to "Russell Crowe and 30 Odd Foot of Grunts." )
Meanwhile, last week, Crowe announced that he won't be presenting at the Orange British Academy Film Awards (also known as the BAFTAs), where he won best actor last year. )
"I am flattered to hear of the invitation to attend BAFTA through the press," Crowe said in a statement. "Unfortunately I have a prior engagement, so to speak. Danielle and I have a lot of things to do at the moment and that is all we are focusing on -- what a bride needs and where she needs to be." )
Danielle is his longtime girlfriend (and now fiancee), singer Danielle Spencer, 32. The wedding is expected to take place sometime later this year. )
Source: The Los Angeles Times
February 3, 2010
A Crowe is born? Gladiatorial candidate one likely "star" for remake
By Steven Zeitchik and Rachel Abramowitz
With a new remake of "A Star Is Born" gaining momentum at Warner Bros., the studio could be closing in on, well, a star.
Russell Crowe has emerged as the front-runner to take the lead male role of an aging, alcoholic musician who mentors/is schooled by -- and then finds romance with -- a younger female star. While it's not believed there is a formal offer yet, the studio is very high on the 45-year-old actor, who in turn is said to be keen to take the role.
The female part would likely be played by Beyonce, who has long been associated with the role and has recently elevated her interest in it.
The three previous iterations of "A Star Is Born" have alternated between settings in the film and the music worlds. The most recent one, the 1976 version from Warner Bros. that starred Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson as doomed pair Esther Hoffman and John Norman Howard, was set in the music world.
Nick Cassavetes has recently entered talks to direct the reboot of the drama, which has spent years in development with various writers (including "Ali's" Stephen J. Rivele and Christopher Wilkinson) taking a crack at it, before getting a new boost with a draft from young screenwriter Will Fetters. Jon Peters, Basel Iwanyk and Billy Gerber are producing. Sean Penn and Robert Downey Jr. had been some of the names said to be considered by the studio before Crowe emerged as the front-runner.
If it comes off, a Crowe-Beyonce pairing would serve as one of the most prominent onscreen interracial romances since 1992's "The Bodyguard," which teamed Kevin Costner with the female singing sensation of the day, Whitney Houston.
A Crowe casting would also mark a return to the dramas of earlier in his career. The New Zealand-born actor has taken his career in the direction of high-end thrillers lately; starring in an international espionage thriller ("Body of Lies), domestic political thriller ("State of Play") and a jail-break thriller (the upcoming "The Next Three Days") -- something of a departure from awards bait such as "A Beautiful Mind" and "The Insider" that marked the earlier part of his career. He'll next be seen in Ridley Scott's interpretation of "Robin Hood."
Woolloomooloo with Charlie ~ 2007
image below from In Touch (US)
Source: The Dominion Post (NZ)
February 3, 2011
Russell Crowe's Aussie and Maori past
Hollywood actor Russell Crowe is very much a Kiwi and 1/16th Ngati Porou - but he may also be distantly descended from an Australian convict.
It may not settle the trans-Tasman tussle over whether New Zealand or Australia claims the award-winning actor, but website Ancestry.com.au has compiled a family tree for the star of Gladiator and American Gangster.
Content manager Brad Argent said despite having a "United Nations" heritage, most of Crowe's ancestors settled in New Zealand.
"Particularly that he has Maori ancestors shows that he's very much a Kiwi. It's a fantastic thing that he has that kind of connection."
Crowe's maternal great-great-great-grandfather, John Hayes, was a trader on East Cape in 1834.
"Statistically, it's very likely that he came from Australia. He may have been like many others who were convict people and they were coming to New Zealand to start again." But though a convict history was once shameful in Australia, Mr Argent said it was now celebrated.
John Hayes wed a Maori woman, and their son Hone Hayes was Crowe's maternal great-great-grandfather. Ngati Porou was a proud tribe with a long warrior history.
"Crowe's warrior connection clearly must be in his blood considering the roles he has played on the big screen, including Gladiator, Cinderella Man and Robin Hood."
The Karori cemetery was full of his relatives. "His ancestry includes North and South Island ancestry, tribal connections, a Welsh grandfather, Scandinavian Forty Mile bush connections, Italian and possible also convict ancestry."
Crowe was born in Wellington but moved to Australia with his parents when he was four, returning to Auckland when he was 14. His cousin, former cricketer Martin Crowe, said he didn't share Crowe's Maori heritage as they were related on their fathers' side.
"That's probably why Russell's got the edge on us," he said.
The global website, the biggest provider of genealogy records in the Western world, with six billion records, launches in New Zealand today, providing access to 20 million records and 140 years of history online that have previously only been available on microfiche in public libraries.
Six major collections - all electoral rolls from 1853, some jury lists, some Canterbury provincial rolls, some Maori voter and electoral rolls, Maori land claims 1958 till 1980, and New Zealand naturalisations till 1981 - will now be available at the click of a button, though for a fee. They'll also be available free on library websites.
The rights to put them on-line were bought from the descendants of Anne Bromell, a New Zealand genealogist who spent more than 20 years converting them to microfilm.