Russell Crowe

BATD ON May 06, 2009 AT 3:01 pm

Russell Crowe

Russell Crowe

Russell Ira Crowe was born in New Zealand, but has known Australia as his home since he was young. As the son of film set caterers, this now 5’10” hunk took to acting at a surprisingly fast pace. He even dropped out of high school at the age of 16 in order to focus more on his career. (But then again, nothing this man does is ever slow to begin with.) He broke into acting as a child star in Neighbours, but Aussie’s know him best for his first two films: Romper Stomper (1992) and The Sum of Us (1994). The latter helped pinpoint him on the American map.

Director Sharon Stone was first to realize Crowe’s bombshell potential, and recruited him for the American film, The Quick and the Dead (1995) almost instantly after his surge to fame across the globe. Less than a year later, Crowe starred in Virtuosity with Denzel Washington. Russell played a serial killer , a role not many can pull off. However, the film did better than director’s expectations, and soon Crowe found himself with a handful of more movie offers; L.A. Confidential (1997) almost granted him an Oscar. Completely unfazed, Crowe signed with Disney for Mystery, Alaska, which aired two years later. He’s achieved his biggest success, though, with two quintessential films that are definitely more his style. Gladiator (2000) and A Beautiful Mind (2001). He turned down the role of “Aragrown” in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, since filming clashed with the shooting of A Beautiful Mind.

Russell in Gladiator

Russell in Gladiator

Cinderella Man came next, which nearly earned him another Oscar. (We know he should have got it!) Two years prior, on his 39th birthday, Crowe married Australian-born singer and actress Danielle Spencer. The couple has two sons together, Charlie and Tennyson. Since, he has appeared in American Gangster, Body of Lies, and State of Play, released this year. Crowe is currently in the middle of filming Robin Hood. When he’s not on camera, though, he’s watching rugby or cricket. He played both while still in school and his cousins are cricket captains. Accusations have been made about his bad temper, due to his public argument with producer Malcolm Gerrie, and assault charges by the New York City Police in 2005, but his loyal colleagues speak to the contrary. Either way, we like a bloke with a little fire in him, and if that’s what it takes to give a great performance, keep them coming.

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