Russell appeared briefly on Showbiz Today (US) yesterday in their "Oscar Nominees' 6 Degree of Separation" feature and had this to say about Kevin Spacey (L.A. Confidential):
"He is the Oscar Wilde of our generation. He is probably the most witty and charming man I've ever met."
He also praised Denzel Washington (Virtuosity), referred to Tom Cruise (The Rabbitohs) as his "mate," and Sean Penn as having had a "drinking buddy history" with him.
Add one more award to The Insider collection. Yesterday the film received the Prism Award for its accurate depiction of tobacco addiction. The award was picked up by Jeffrey Wigand.
We've got screen captures of an NBC interview with Russell here! (Thanks to Neicie)
Speaking of Oscar, here's a Russell-related tidbit from USA Today: The 25 top acting and directing nominees have received their gift from the Academy -- a mini Motorola V cellular phone. (As if Russell needed another one!)
Insider box office news from around the world: "The Insider" delivered a middling $638,000 on 203 in France, placed third behind Gallic titles "Le gout des autres" in its third lap and rookie "Le libertin," toplining Vincent Perez. Michael Mann"s pic made a lively $220,000 on 35 in Belgium and abated by 28% in the U.K. for a mediocre $1.6 million. Cume is $19 million. (Variety)
From Reuters: "With Oscar-night jitters quickly approaching, at least one actor nominated for an Academy Award this Sunday is not nursing a case of nerves. Russell Crowe of "The Insider" is as calm as ever because he says he won't win." Read the full story here (thanks to Thalya)
And while the odds seem to favor Kevin Spacey, Russell certainly isn't far behind: From MSNBC's article An 'American Beauty' Pageant?" by Harry Haun:
"If anyone takes Spacey"s place at the Oscar podium, let"s hope it"s Russell Crowe, who brilliantly played the quiet center of the storm in "The Insider," Jeffrey Wigand, a flawed and frightened man trying to make a stand for what"s right. Not the least of Crowe"s achievements was taking scenes from Al Pacino, in his Outraged Indignation mode." (thanks to Heidi)
3/21/00: SECOND UPDATE TODAY!
Just announced: The official illustrated companion book for Gladiator coming in May! (Newmarket Pictorial Moviebooks) By John Logan, David Franzoni. It will feature excerpts from the screenplay, historical sidebars and illustrations, details on period costumes and epic set designs, behind-the-scenes photographs from the location filming, and interviews with the screenwriters, actors, and director.
On the Tonight Show last night, Jay Leno introduced a brief videotape of Russell filming Proof of Life in Poland. Jay said Russell was supposed to appear on the show this week but couldn't because of work on the movie. In the video, Russell says hi to Jay, then he's seen hanging from a helicopter filming one scene. Russell is bundled up in a heavy coat and a cap, and on the cold weather he quips, "It's cold enough to freeze the nuts off a brown dog on a rusty chain at 50 yards and he still wouldn't have time to eat his tucker." He then leads a few, apparently non-English-speaking crew members also in saying hi to Jay. The clip lasted only for a few minutes, so if you missed it, you're probably not alone. The show will be repeated late night next week on NBC affiliates. Check local listings for times. (And watch our Proof of Life page for some screen captures coming soon!)
For more Insider legal news see our Related News section.
TV ALERT!! Russell makes a brief and unexpected appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, tonight!! Those of you on the West Coast and Down Under might still be able to catch it!
Russell sets everyone straight on the Jodie Foster (Flora Plum) rumors: from TV Guide Online:
"'Funny, isn't it,' he says with a grin. 'I was reading an English tabloid and it said that I intentionally went to the Golden Globes with Jodie Foster to cause a stir. It's like, 'What are you talking about?' I just happen to really respect her. I think she's a magnificent talent and now I know she is a very magnificent woman. And we got on like a house on fire.' Before anymore speculation, Crowe wants to end some of the rumors about him and La Foster. 'We didn't go shopping for baby clothes - and no, I'm not [her son] Charlie's father.'" read the full story by Jeanne Wolf here. (Thanks to Karin)
IGN FilmForce managed to get some photos from the Gladiator press kit, you can see them here.
The DreamWorks SKG fansite has another Gladiator sneak preview review here.
There is a photo of Russell and Jodie Foster (Flora Plum) spotted shopping in L.A., in People Magazine (U.S., 3/27/00). You can see it here. (Thanks to Lori C. and Rhiannon)
The same interview we posted yesterday from the London Free Press is now also in the Sunday Calgary Sun. ("Crowe's Spirituality Takes Wing"). If you missed it you can read it here.
A relaxed and cheerful Russell appeared on both Access Hollywood and E News Daily yesterday and thanks to Neicie you can see screen captures here! The biggest new news to come from the show was that Russell will be featured on the cover of the next Talk Magazine (US). He once again confirmed that he won't be taking Jodie Foster as his date to the Oscars. In fact he said the same thing on the subject that he had on Andrew Denton's Breakfast Show show (see our item dated Feb 16.) (Why didn't they ask the next logical question -- "Who ARE you taking?")
Another new interview with Russell just added, this time from the London Free Press. "Crowe's Spirituality Takes Wing" here.
Insider director Michael Mann and the real Jeffrey Wigand, whom Russell portrays in the film, will be guests on The Charlie Rose show on PBS tonight. Check local listings. (Thanks to Alysia!)
We've got lots of tidbits from various sources.
More from the Oscar nominees' luncheon. We've added some more screen captures from TV coverage of the event (special thanks to Neicie for the photos!). Click here and scroll.
Oscar.com has made it easier to view the nominee interviews from the luncheon. Now you can select individual nominees rather than having to sit through all of them to get to Russell. Again, it's worth the download. Russell tells a funny story about Virtuosity co-star Denzel Washington meeting an enthusiastic fan of the film while on a plane in Siberia. Russell also speaks about Jeffrey Wigand and the moral of The Insider. The following quote was shown on E! television's coverage of the event:
[Russell talking about the Oscars]: "Well, I've watched the Academy Awards since I was a kid, probably since I was six or seven. So, uh, you know, it's part of my calendar year. But, um, I'm not sure that I've ever done the, uh, holding the hairbrush in front of the mirror speech trick." (Thanks to Ruth for the quote)
In an interview with Louis B. Hobson of the Calgary Sun, Russell emphatically states "I'm not going to win the Oscar." He goes on to say, "Just being nominated is a great privilege. I know people who have had stellar, long careers and have never had the benefit of been acknowledged by their peers in this way.
"No matter what crap I might do in the future, I'll always be an Oscar-nominated actor," he said. (Thanks to Diane and Chris)
The following is from the April issue of Empire. (Thanks to Kathy)
"[I]t's Crowe who is the soul of the film, as a man trapped by forces too massive for him to fully comprehend. Delivering an ambiguous performance, (we're never too sure what his motives are; money is at one point mentioned), which deftly avoids the cliche of the helpless victim and occasionally gives in to self-pity, Crowe manages to give what could be an overwhelmingly complex film a deeply human centre." Empire gives the film a five-out-of-five star rating.
And finally, the following is from the March issue of GQ magazine
"...But box office returns are not the full measure of the leading man: If George Clooney isn't one, the term has no meaning. And although Russell Crowe may never become a star, his performance as a corporate whistle-blower in Michael Mann's The Insider is the most stirring and original piece of leading-man acting I've seen in years. The one thing our movies have conspicuously lacked in the past decade is a believable--unsentimental and unironic--portrayal of courage in a contemporary setting, in the real world of big business, big government and big media: Crowe accomplishes it very quietly, almost unobtrusively, daringly keeping the sources of the character's strength half-hidden, mysterious. That's a man worth following.
Dark Horizons has just added a new interview with Russell on Gladiator.
To all of our readers in Australia, just a reminder that Mystery, Alaska opens today. You can read a few new reviews of it at urbancinefile.
To read our exclusive interview with Kevin Durand, who plays Tree in the movie, click here.
Russell attended the Academy Awards nominees luncheon yesterday in Los Angeles. (For more screen captures from various TV reports, click here or the photo. For an AP photo from the event, click here.)
Russell wore a black leather coat, a light stubble and apparently a long face, as several news reports described him as either serious or broody. The following was taken from the Los Angeles Times:
"First-time nominees like [Hilary] Swank and Russell Crowe seemed almost giddy and somber, respectively, with the attention the nominations afforded them. . . . The brooding Crowe, nominated for his role as a tobacco industry whistle-blower in The Insider, on the other hand, took a more serious view.
'I don't have a very cynical or humorous opinion about the Academy Awards,' said the Australian actor, wearing a long black leather coat. 'To me it's a very important thing and you have to accept it with a great deal of grace.' "
And a Russell-related item from the L.A. Daily News:
"Nominees said such Oscar-related festivities were opportunities to get together with fellow performers. After following best-actor nominee Russell Crowe to the podium, fellow Aussie Toni Collette was asked about Crowe, with whom she worked in the 1992 film Spotswood (AKA The Efficiency Expert).
'I remember getting drunk with him and him having to clean up my vomit,' Colette said with a big laugh."
For a group photo from the luncheon (can you find Russell?), and a video clip of nominee interviews, check out the official Academy Awards site, Oscar.com.
We might as well get things in the open, as the actress said to the bishop. Russell lost the best actor award to Kevin Spacey at the Screen Actors Guild awards in Los Angeles last night. That makes Kevin almost a shoo-in for the Best Actor award at the Oscars in two weeks. In the previous five SAG awards shows, nine out of 10 winners have gone on to win Oscars in the lead-acting categories.
Last night, Russell chewed gum and looked about as mean as a grizzly bear for the few seconds he was on camera during the two-hour, 15-minute broadcast. (Click on the photo for more photos). Looking not much happier was Insider director Michael Mann, who was seated with Russell and who had lost the Directors Guild of America award to American Beauty's Sam Mendes the night before.
Overall, it must be a frustrating time for those involved with The Insider. Not only has American Beauty likely stolen their chances of winning many top awards, but also this month's Premiere magazine (US) says Disney expects to lose about $60 million on the film due to its relatively poor box office. But hey folks, did anyone really think a serious, three-hour film about the tobacco industry could be a blockbuster anyway? On those terms, the movie's $25 million-plus earnings so far have got to be considered pretty good.
As reported here yesterday, Russell was a presenter at last night's Directors Guild of America awards. Reuters had the following report on Russell's appearance on stage with Carl Reiner:
"Comedian Carl Reiner thinks it is time for Hollywood to usher in a new award category: best British or Australian actor doing an American accent.
Acting as host of the Directors Guild of America awards on Saturday night, Reiner made the proposal after watching a clip of Russell Crowe playing an American tobacco company executive in 'The Insider.'
With Crowe at his side on stage, Reiner said, 'There should be a special award for Brits and Australians doing an American accent in a movie. I know you are Australian and have such an Australian accent....'
Crowe then cut in and said, 'Actually I was born in New Zealand.' To which Reiner replied, 'That makes it even better.' "
We have added another interview with Russell about The Insider (this time from Quantas Magazine) here. (Thanks to Patricia)
With all the Insider news this past week (don't forget to watch the Screen Actors Guild awards tonight on TNT!), here's a few tidbits on Gladiator.
Cartoon of Maximus Crowe (below) from Time Out London (Cinema 2000 issue, March 8-15).
"Tourjourblue" got a chance to see a sneak preview of Gladiator, and can't stop raving about it! Here are a few excerpts: "Of all the movies I cherish, Gladiator has to be number one on my list. I really feel that Crowe and [Joaquin] Phoenix made this movie. Crowe's character was perfect for him and I don't think that anyone else could have performed it any more perfectly than he did. Phoenix played a perfect villain! If anyone has any doubts about seeing this movie, put them aside right now! Since the very evening I saw this film I have told and tested everyone I know to go and see it on May 5th. ... The great thing is that no matter what type of movies you like or dislike, everyone is definitely sure to love Gladiator!"
Meanwhile, iFUSE has a review from a sneak preview of Gladiator, along with a very funny illustration! To find it, click here, then scroll till you find the link.
Now back to The Insider! The above mentioned Time Out London has this to say in their "Top Ten Oscar tips":
Best Actor -- Russell Crowe
Denzel Washington, handsome and worthy as ever, may pip him at the post, but 'The Insider's' Russell Crowe -- looking older, heavier and less, er, sexy than he is in real life -- is a bona fide star who can really act (next up Ridley Scott's 'Gladiator').
Russell is keeping us busy!
It has just been announced that Russell will be a presenter at the 52nd annual Directors Guild of America awards, today at the Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles. (Thanks to Irishface) Michael Mann (The Insider) is nominated for Best Director.
Just another reminder: be sure to watch Russell at the Screen Actors Guild awards tomorrow (Sunday). He is nominated for Best Actor for his work in The Insider. Check local listings for times.
On Monday, he is expected to be attending the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences 19th annual luncheon, honoring Oscar nominees, at the Beverly Hilton. (Other Russell related nominees expected to attend are: Kevin Spacey (L.A. Confidential), Denzel Washington (Virtuosity), Toni Collette (Spotswood) and Tom Cruise (The Rabbitohs)
Thanks to Carrie for writing in to let all our Irish and UK visitors know that Showbiz Weekly will review The Insider on Sunday at 2.30pm on Sky News, and may also show an interview with Russell.
Carrie also sent in the following reviews:
Ireland's Dave Fanning, TV host of the Movie Show: "Director Michael Mann has a message but even with the goodies versus the baddies bit he allows our 2 heroes to portray well entrenched insecurities beneath their hard-boiled surfaces. Crowe, in particular is great as the aging & injured lone wolf trying to keep it together for one last onslaught.
And Pacino is Pacino which means he does the job!
The Insider has great chemistry & great acting & has an awful lot of shouting into mobile phones as well. Diane Venora is spot on as Wigand's wife, while The Sound of Music's Christopher Plummer as the star of 60 Minutes, Mike Wallace, gives us a deliciously cruel expose of an aging performer's vanities.
The Insider is proof that they do make movies like they used to and that's a good thing !!"
And from Barry Norman's Film Night review: "Mann has a big and important tale to tell about corporate power & corruption & for the most part he tells it very well. At times indeed there's a lot of quite agonising tension & the performances are splendid. Crowe, unrecognisable from LA Confidential, is outstanding as a decent troubled man who wants to do the right thing. Christopher Plummer is on cracking form as Mike Wallace, the 60 Minutes anchorman equally troubled about doing the right thing. The problem is really Pacino - he is as riveting as ever but his starry presence unbalances the film, leads to unnecessary padding of his role & makes everything a good deal longer than it should have been."
Thanks to Susan M. for sending in this photo from Hello Magazine (U.K., 2/28/00). Click on the photo to see a larger version.
Just a reminder to our readers in the United Kingdom; The Insider opens there tomorrow, Friday, March 10.
The Insider recently opened in Korea. Thanks to Pea Eye, you can see their poster, as well as read an Australian review just added here.
As promised, you can now read the new Time Out London article (mentioned yesterday) here.
New Weekly (Australia) has a double page spread on Russell with several pictures and a short interview. (Thanks to Jenny)
He's also in Time Out London (March 1 - 8, 2000). We've posted the first photo, with the article to come! Click here!
We've added the rest of the photos from the London Times article here.
It's time for some shameless self-promotion! There was a very cool mention of us in The Sunday London Times for March 5. Well, you may also want to read the new Russell interview too! You can find it here! (be sure to scroll).
Russell is the cover boy of the London Evening Standard's entertainment section, and we have the photo and the new interview for you here! ("Insider Russell is on the outside"). (Thanks to Tom W.) The Insider opens in the UK on March 10.
To all of our Japanese readers who have to patiently wait for The Insider to open in May, click here. (Includes the trailer) (Thanks to Nao)
Can't make it through the day without hearing Russell's voice? Entertainment Weekly online features Russell in their "Speaking of Oscar" interviews. (Must have RealPlayer to listen.)
Reel.com features interviews with both Russell and Michael Mann on their Oscarama page. (Scroll to interviews.) Excerpt from Russell's:
Q: It wouldn't be surprising after The Insider is released to see you become one of the world's biggest movie stars. Are you comfortable with that?
RC: I never set out to be a movie star. I'm an actor and I have to follow the instincts that drive that.
Q: What about the rumors that you can be difficult to work with on set?
RC: I'm an intense bastard when I'm doing my job. I don't suffer fools and I don't wanna f**k around. I want you to be ready and prepared. Let's go, man. If you come to that set and you don't know your lines, what the f**k have you been doing? You don't deserve the job. And there are lots of other people who will do it,who do want to commit heart and soul. That's just the way I view life. The people who don't have a good relationship with me from a good performance point of view are very few and far between. The next day you'll be shooting something else and won't have the chance to shoot that scene again. Do as much as you can while you're there.
Army Archerd has a piece on Russell in today's Variety. (Be sure to scroll). The article begins, "OSCAR-NOMINEE RUSSELL CROWE is hanging from a helicopter during a snowstorm near Posnan, Poland . . ." Also, it looks like Russell may be in the U.S. just in time for the Screen Actors Guild Awards, televised live on March 12th. We'll keep you posted.
For Irish or UK visitors, Barry Norman's Film Night will review The Insider on Thursday the 9th of March on Sky Premier at 7:30pm. (Thanks to Carrie!)
In honor of Ted Casablanca (just kidding!), we've added a few more photos of Russell and Jodie Foster at the Golden Globes, and one shows the couple partying with another of Hollywood's most famous actresses. Click here to see them. (Thanks to Ana and Nao)
Russell has been nominated for a British Academy Film Award for his performance in The Insider. The other best actor nominees are: Ralph Fiennes for "The End of the Affair"; Jim Broadbent, "Topsy Turvy; Om Puri, "East Is East"; and Kevin Spacey, "American Beauty." (So where's Denzel???) The awards will be handed out April 9, two weeks after the Academy Awards.
Meanwhile, speculation continues as to who will win Best Actor at the Oscars on March 26. Russell's chances, according to various Las Vegas oddsmakers, range from 5-to-1 to 2-to-1. But he's always among the top three choices, usually behind front-runner Kevin Spacey (L.A. Confidential) and Golden Globe winner Denzel Washington (Virtuosity).
Speaking of Denzel, he and Russell have now publicly tagged the other to win the Oscar. Russell has already said he expects Denzel will win. Now, in an interview on the El Pais site, Denzel says he thinks Russell might take home the gold:
". . . The odds are in [Washington's] favor but he's not overconfident, especially when it comes to Russell Crowe, whose role in The Insider could end his dream. 'There's a lot of talk about Russell, I think he's got a good chance,' says Washington as if refering to a dog race." (Special thanks to Felipe)
As we reported earlier this week, the new Oscar edition of Entertainment Weekly features a full-page photo/article on Russell. It hit newwstands and mailboxes yesterday and features yet another spectacular photo from his 2-year-old photo shoot. Click photo for larger version plus the article. (Thanks to "Little Bee" for sending in a scan of the photo.)
The Insider is holding on to 5th place this week in Australia and is 20th in the U.S. box office.
Be sure to check out our latest Gladiator set photos just added HERE. (Thanks to Dan).
Variety reports today on the box office boost for the Best Picture nominees. Unfortunately, The Insider did not share in that surge in ticket sales.
"At the other end of the spectrum is Disney"s "The Insider." Despite boosting its screen count to 651 from 132, it mustered a slim $484,769 payday, or just $745 per location. Michael Mann"s drama copped seven noms, tying for second behind "Beauty," yet it has pulled in just $27.5 million since a November bow. Only a bevy of surprise wins will likely revive the pic."
(photo) Russell at one of The Insider premieres, from the February issue of Roadshow Magazine (Japan).
Harry Knowles of Ain't-It-Cool, hosted a preview screening of Gladiator this past week in San Francisco. The following is an excerpt from his review:
"When Russell Crowe says, "I will win the crowd. I will give them something that they have never seen before." The utter shiver of coolness that goes through you is... electric. Then there is the brief stanza of conviction that he utters after removing his gladiator helmet... delivered so well... so bad ass.... so cool that the audience had that rupture of "F**king A!","Ooooh Yeeeaaaah" and so on.
GLADIATOR is a great cool film. Russell Crowe is now very much in the position to takeover the badass bubblegum chewer award from Chow Yun Fat, Harrison Ford and Mel Gibson. When his Maximus has a sword in his hand or a trident or a shield or whatever it may be... When he walks out to the middle of the arena there is this feeling as if you could line up ten thousand men between him and his personal revenge goal and he would wade through them as though they were pond water.
(You can read Harry's entire review here.)
The San Francisco Chronicle had a slighly different opinion on the film:
"Gladiator turned out to be violent, unpleasant and largely pointless".
Click on the small photo and you can now read the latest article on Russell and Jude Law from the March issue of Vogue (U.S.) (See item below.)
As promised, the new full-page photo from the March issue of Vogue (U.S.). (Click on photo for larger version.) We will post the article asap, but suggest that this one is worth buying! (For those of you not in the U.S., you might be able to purchase it via mail. Try visiting vogue.com).
This photo is from the March issue of In Style magazine (U.S.). (Thanks to Courtney)
We've added some cool new photos of Russell, Djimon Hounsou and other cast members on the set of Gladiator! Find them on our site here! (Special thanks to Shane)
Speaking of Gladiator, Dark Horizons has a new, pretty thoughtful review of the movie (review includes minor spoliers). You can read it here.
Today's USA Today reports The Insider's Oscar nominations last Tuesday apparently gave it a big boost at the U.S. box office over the weekend. Friday-through-Sunday estimates showed that the film, which had a limited re-release over the weekend, earned about $200,000, or a 300 percent increase over the previous weekend. The movie is in 132 theaters now and expands to about 500 this Friday. (Larry King's USA Today column also has a few quotables from Burt Reynolds, though nothing is related to Russell or their film together, Mystery, Alaska.)
In the February 25 issue of Entertainment Weekly (on sale now), in their feature on the Oscar nominations, there is a small photo of Russell from The Insider. They also write: "several of the new nominees are doing their best not to overreact or get their hopes up . . . Russell Crowe . . . faxed us a cautiously worded statement ('I would like to thank the Academy for the privilege of this nomination.')"
We seem to have overlooked that Mike Wallace has written another letter to the editors, again complaining about the accuracy of The Insider, in the Special Sex Issue "Lust Horizon" of Premiere Magazine (March, U.S.) (most likely because we were in shock that they left Russell out of this issue!!). Libby Gelman-Waxner also talks about The Insider in her "If You Ask Me" column in the same issue.
We chose to delay reporting on this last week, so as not to put a damper on the good news about Russell's Academy Award nomination. The three men charged in an alleged extortion plot against Russell appeared in a New South Wales courtroom last week, but no pleas were entered and the case was adjourned until March 14. According to the AAP, the three men are charged with conspiracy to hinder an investigation, conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and conspiracy to demand money with menace. They are accused of stealing a security video that caught Russell scuffling with men outside a Coffs Harbour nightclub last November. Authorities say the men then demanded money from Russell to keep it out of the media's hands. (thanks to A)
Ted Casablanca (E! "The Awful Truth") is at it again. This just in from his latest gossip column:
"Steven Spielberg has done it again, producing yet another summer hit-to-be. I'm speaking, of course, of Ridley Scott's Gladiator, about which I hear primo things. Now, surely DreamWorks is gearing up fun stuff for those drive-thru kiddie deals? (After all, the toys are already designed for The Martian Chronicles, which isn't even written yet.) Hmmm. Wonder what Russell Crowe's doll will look like? Something menacing that throws french fries, no doubt." (Thanks to Bob)
The February 18 issue of OK magazine (UK) includes this small photo of Russell, along with a tiny mention of his starring in Flora Plum with Jodie Foster. (Thanks to Susan M.)
According to the Associated Press, Las Vegas oddsmakers have Kevin Spacey as a 9-5 pick for winning the Oscar, with Denzel second and Russell third. (What do they know??)
USA Today reports that The Insider will re-open in New York and L.A. on Friday and expand to 600 more theaters across the U.S. the following Friday.
This morning, listeners of Andrew Denton's Breakfast Show on Triple M in Sydney were treated to a phone interview with Russell, who called in from London where he is preparing for Proof of Life. Russell was in great spirits, laughing and joking around with Andrew, who asked who he was bringing as his date to the Oscars. (Andrew jokingly suggested Carmen Electra.) Russell, laughing, said he had already asked Jodie Foster (Flora Plum) but "she didn"t enjoy the experience of hanging around with a loser last time!" And then a bit more serious (but not much!), he recounted how Jodie had informed him that unlike the party atmosphere of the Golden Globes, the Academy Awards consisted of basically "sitting around for 6 hours waiting." She was going to stay home in her pj's and watch it on TV "eating Chinese food."
As promised -- from Movieline (see item dated 2/14). Click on the photo for a larger version. (Page may take awhile to open, but it's worth the wait!)
For those of our readers in the UK who have been so patiently waiting for The Insider to open, BBC Radio 1 is running a contest to win free tickets to March 3rd screenings across the UK. (Because of this, we'll forgive them for spelling Russell's name wrong!!) Click here for details!
Yesterday was an exciting day for everyone! The following is a bit of Russell's reaction to the news of being nominated for an Oscar. It's adapted from several sources (The Sydney Morning Herald, The Melbourne Age, the AAP and Entertainment Tonight).
Actor Russell Crowe found out from a friend's bloodcurdling scream in another room in London. . .
New Zealand-born Crowe, who is filming Proof of Life with Meg Ryan in London, told Channel 9's Today Show he had just come back from a jog when he heard a scream from the other room. "We danced around the hotel for a while, then I had to go to work."
Crowe had blanked out the possibility of a nomination until he woke up at 5am recently going "oh dearie, dearie me."
Russell said his Oscar nomination was still an incredible privilege even though he's already received three major awards for the role.
"It's an important thing in my job . . . to receive recognition from my peers for what you do."
"Quite frankly, if I couldn't get any recognition from playing (this role) I wouldn't know what the hell I could do, you know, maybe play a dog."
On his chances of winning:
"Denzel won the Golden Globe, so it's probably going to go the same way."
Russell was very pleased Michael Mann was also nominated and spoke to the director about 20 minutes after the nominations were announced.
"He knows the opportunity he gave me and I just reiterated and thanked him for it," he said.
We've been predicting it for more than a year, and now it's official! Yes, Russell has been nominated for an Academy Award for his performance in The Insider! The awards were announced early this morning in Los Angeles. Russell will compete with Richard Farnesworth, Sean Penn and former co-stars Kevin Spacey and Denzel Washington for the Best Actor award, to be handed out live on March 26 at the 72nd Annual Academy Awards ceremonies in Los Angeles. The Insider is also nominated for Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay (for a full list go to oscar.com). Congratulations to Russell and all the other nominees!
Russell's band 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts have just added the first MP3 of some old songs that have never been formally released, to their official website. This month's song is 'Resurrect My Radio'. Download it free HERE.
Oscar.com, the official site of the Academy Awards, will provide real-time streaming video of the 72nd Academy Awards nominations this Tuesday, Feb. 15, beginning at 8:35 EST /5:35 a.m. PST. (US). Russell is almost a lock for a best actor nomination for The Insider, which is also likely to be nominated for best film. E Entertainment TV will also broadcast the nominations live, and the US network morning shows have done so in the past.
We've finally confirmed the release date for Mystery, Alaska in Australia: February 24. The film opened last week in New Zealand. See our MA: In Print page for a new review. If you haven't already, be sure to read our exclusive interview with Kevin Durand, who plays Tree in the film and who also can be heard on the CD "Gaslight" by Russell's band, 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts. You can read the interview here.
The February 7-13 issue of Variety has an article on the SAG nominations (with this photo). There is also a small mention of Gladiator. (No new photos.)
The March issue of Movieline (US) has a full-page picture/article on why Russell (well, and nine other actors) deserve to win the Oscar. The magazine also reports that Russell is the first choice to star opposite pal Nicole Kidman in a film called In the Cut, to be directed by Jane Campion. It's based on the book of the same name, and is about a smart, sexually adventurous New York University professor who gets involved with a policeman hunting down a sexual serial killer. Movieline reports the film is full of sex; one steamy scene led people close to the project to nickname the movie "In the Butt." The magazine has two photos of Russell, which we'll post as soon as possible. ( Thanks to Diana)
Aint it Cool News has several reviews of preview screenings of Gladiator. Read them here. (Thanks to "A" and TJ)
Also, Ted Casablanca's gossip column has more about Russell and Jodie Foster's post-Golden Globes partying. Click here and scroll. (Thanks to Chris)
You asked for him, we deliver! We're proud to present an exclusive Maximum Crowe interview with actor Kevin Durand, who plays Tree in Mystery, Alaska! Find it HERE!
This just in from The Hollywood Reporter: Russell will be joining his long-time agent George Freeman (who got official release from his contract at ICM on Tuesday night) at the William Morris Agency.
Russell's made the U.S. tabloids. This photo is in the Feb. 15 edition of The Globe. (Thanks to Ana)
The Insider took in another $500,000 in its second week of release in Australia, placing fifth. So far it's made $1.6 million there.
Yet more awards news for The Insider! The Writers Guild has nominated director Michael Mann and co-writer Eric Roth for their adaptation of the original Vanity Fair article that spawned the film. The winners of the 52nd annual Writers Guild awards will be announced March 5 at ceremonies in New York City and Los Angeles.
Entertainment Weekly's 2000 Yearbook (US) features a full-page photo of Russell. It's on newsstands now. For a larger version, click the photo -- it's worth the wait! (Thanks to Sami!).
In case you missed it yesterday, we added a new set report and some set photos to our Gladiator page.
The Insider is coming to video and DVD! The release date is April 11. (Thanks Barry!)
By the way, there is still no video/DVD release date for Mystery, Alaska. But our sources say it could be sometime in May. We'll keep you posted!
For those of you who may have missed it yesterday, we have added a Flora Plum page.
Just a reminder to any of our readers who are members of the Academy. Nomination ballots are due today at 5 PM PST. (Russell Crowe - best actor, Russell Crowe - best actor, Russell Crowe - best actor!)
Very exciting news today! Russell has been nominated by the Screen Actors Guild for Best Actor for his work in The Insider. (This is usually a precursor for the Academy Award nominations!) There were a few changes in his competition this time. Besides Russell, the nominees are: Kevin Spacey, Denzel Washinton, Jim Carrey and Philip Seymour Hoffman. You can get the full list of nominations here. The Screen Actors Guild Awards will be presented on Sunday, March 12, 2000 at the Los Angeles Shrine Exposition Center and televised live nationally on TNT (Turner Network Television), at 8:00 PM (ET/PT) 7:00 PM Central, 6:00 PM Mountain.
"Flora Plum" has been confirmed! This just in from the Hollywood Reporter:
"Crowe gets ÎPlum" role with Danes Russell Crowe, who earned critical acclaim for his role as tobacco company whistle-blower Jeffrey Wigand in "The Insider," has committed to star opposite Claire Danes in the Jodie Foster-directed drama "Flora Plum" for USA Films. Crowe would play the lead role of a circus "freak" in the Depression-era story of unrequited love. (thanks to Toni!)
David Poland has this to say about "Flora Plum" on TNT's Roughcut today.
"PLUM ROLE: If, indeed, Russell Crowe takes on the role opposite Claire Danes in Flora Plum, we could see a career high for both Ms. Danes as well as Ms. Foster, as a director. There has long been a sense of the tentative in Ms. Danes' work that has not served her (or audiences) well. Hard to imagine any tentativeness opposite Russell Crowe. You have to either put up or shut up. Likewise, much as I have loved much of Jodie Foster's directing work, it sometimes gets precious. And again, I think that Crowe can keep her from that. (Of course, you have to give her credit for hiring him in the first place.)"
For anyone who may have blinked and missed it, you can view the new Gladiator trailer that aired yesterday during the Super bowl here. (Thanks to Kauldron)
Michael Mann (The Insider) is part of a panel of directors interviewed in the February 7 issue of Newsweek (US). It's on newsstands now. The article is an interesting one for film fans in general. And for Russell fans, Mann has this to say about casting Russell as Jeffrey Wigand:
Newsweek: Michael, I would never have imagined that Russell Crowe -- who"s this buff Australian guy -- could have played Jeffrey Wigand in "The Insider." And yet it was such a brilliant choice.
Mann: The choice I got the weirdest reaction to was when I said Daniel Day-Lewis was going to be Hawkeye in "Last of the Mohicans." Because American studios didn"t know him. They said, "You mean that skinny guy? That short, skinny guy in a wheelchair?" Because all he had done was "My Left Foot." I said, "Well, he"s not short. He"s a tall, skinny guy." With Russell -- in a way it"s a simple thing. I don"t cast for physical type. There"s this strange kind of poetic calculus you try to work out. "Is this what I want? Do I feel right about it?" And then you"re sitting with Russell Crowe, and you decide that the strength he has -- the kind of inner drive -- is right for Jeffrey Wigand. You just know when you know.
Another magazine alert, this time for those of you down under. Look for the latest issues of Who Magazine (7 Feb, 2000 - Michael J. Fox on the cover) and Neweekly, (7 Feb, 2000) which has approx. 9 photos of Russell. You can read the articles here (be sure to scroll). (Thanks to Katrina)
Also from Neweekly:
"Globe trotting ......Best Actor nominee Russell Crowe and his date, Jodie Foster, really set tongues. The two strolled through the parties, oblivious to whispers of a publicity stunt. The best quote of the night went to an unnamed film producer who, after spying them nuzzling in a corner, blurted out, "Now that's the best acting I've seen all year." But while Jodie got carried away showing photos of her cute 18-month-old son, Charles, at Sony's party, true Aussie bloke Russell held onto Jodie with one hand and clutched a nice cold beer in the other......"(Thanks to Katrina)
A few new links for you to check out today. This first one is an article (Crowe the Chameleon) from The Daily Telegraph and features a great new photo. Click on the word "report." (Thanks to Chris)
We were hoping to let this next one slide by unnoticed but our readers keep us on our toes. Be forewarned: Once again Russell is not presented in the most flattering light. But we have to admit that "Cannibal" line is pretty funny! See Ted Casablanca's Awful Truth.(Thanks to Annie and Bree)
Reminder: There is supposed to be an all-new, longer Gladiator trailer shown during today's Super Bowl.
Here is the photo from the new Entertainment Weekly (U.S.). The magazine also has a caricature of Russell, which we've added to our scrapbook page here.
And finally, one more look at Russell and Jodie at the Golden Globes here .
Russell's uncle Dave Crowe was kind enough to send us his review of the Insider. Read it here!!!
Magazine alert!! Look for 2 small photos of Russell in Entertainment Weekly (U.S.) on sale tomorrow. We won't spoil it, but be sure to read the captions. (And yes -- as always, for those of you who are outside the U.S. and can't get a copy, you can count on us to post the photos asap!) (Thanks to "A"!)
If you have been following our news page for the last few weeks, the moment we have all been waiting for is finally here! You can now purchase the new 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts cd single from the official site here. Be sure to read our review!! (See news item 1/15 for details about the MP3's coming soon.)
The Insider opened down under yesterday, The Sydney Morning Herald had this to say about Russell:
"Crowe has transformed himself to play Jeffrey Wigand, the former tobacco industry executive who blew the whistle on his company's efforts to downplay the harm-fulness of its product. It's not just the weight he put on for the role; it's the way he deploys it.
Usually a lightning rod on screen, he slows down to become the quintessential indoor man - ash-blond hair, pasty complexion, the sluggishness of the perennially deskbound. Wearing glasses, business shirts and baggy suits, he looks like a man who's been constrained for years by the routines of corporate life. Even the way he holds his head is right. When he's in repose, it's tilted sideways, as if bowed down with the effort of calculating everything he has at stake.
Meanwhile, Pacino's Lowell Bergman, the 60 Minutes producer who persuaded Wigand to go pub-lic, presents his temperamental antithesis - a nervy, old-fashioned reporter fast on his feet and faster on the phone. It's a flashy part.
Even so, Crowe effortlessly holds his place in the frame. Mann uses his paleness to centre him. He's the flame, and the dark, febrile Pacino is the dancing moth." (Read the full review here).
The New York Daily news had a brief item on something many of our visitors have been asking about -- that is, what's up with Russell and Jodie Foster. We'd kept a lid on things since there hadn't been an official announcement, but the Daily News and other entertainment sites have spilled the beans (via Jodie's publicist).
Russell and Jodie are friends, and may work together on Jodie's next film, Flora Plum. That's the film she chose to direct instead of starring in the Silence of the Lambs sequel. The movie will star Claire Danes (who had a small role in Jodie's last directorial effort, Home for the Holidays). Russell would play a circus freak who takes the young waif under his wing, makes her star, and eventually falls in love with her. (Yep, you read that right: a circus freak!)
According to earlier news reports, the film is budgeted at about $20 million and production would start sometime this spring. That's a problem, however, because Russell's set to begin Proof of Life in March. We'll keep you posted.
Meanwhile, the following was taken from the Daily News' story on the Golden Globes (Thanks to Sue M. for the link to the Mr. Showbiz article, which summarizes this one.):
"...Speaking of curious couples, what"s going on between Jodie Foster and Russell Crowe? "The Insider" escorted the actress to the Golden Globes. Foster "s rep vouches the two are friends who may soon be working on a movie together. What, then, to make of their coziness later in the evening? Odd as it sounds, Crowe and the confirmed bachelorette were seen nuzzling, holding hands and slow-dancing at after-parties.
The Australian actor said he enjoyed the sensation they created. "That was the intention, " he said.
"He paid me, " Foster joked.
They were also spotted earlier in the week shopping for baby clothes -- presumably for Foster "s son, Charles. But even before Crowe ever met Foster, he sent Charles a couple of tiny rugby jumpers. Go figure."
On a lighter note, Nancy was kind enough to send in the following item from Jan. 24's New York Post gossip page:
RUSSELL: try again
WE aren't as gullible as Russell Crowe thinks. The Aussie actor, who has no great love for the press, was telling tall tales the other night. "This is my first time in New York during the winter," he told us at the National Board of Review's awards on Tuesday night. "It's great. I went jogging in Central Park, and Seinfeld ran past me."
We're assuming the Post found this hard to believe, since the East Coast is having freezing weather at the moment. But Russell should be used to it, after filming Mystery, Alaska in temperatures that stayed below zero!
We have added a few more photos from the Golden Globes here and some from the Broadcast Film Critics Assn. and the Critics Choice awards here.
Speaking of the Broadcast Film Critics award . . .
From the Associate Press:
The morning after missing out on a Golden Globe, Russell Crowe collected another best acting prize for The Insider at the Broadcast Film Critics Awards in Los Angeles.
"Holy snapping assholes folks. What are you doing?" asked Crowe as he collected his fourth critics award for the role as a tobacco industry whistle blower.
"Thank's very much for this," Crowe said. He was recovering after a huge night out at Golden Globe parties with Jodie Foster.
"I had a ball. I had the best date. She let me be as silly as I want to be," said Crowe.
The Australian based star revealed he and Foster are in discussions about appearing in a movie together.
"That's how our telephone relationship started," he said.
"Then I was cheeky on the phone and said I needed a date for the Golden Globes and she said 'I'm your girl' so off we went."
Also -- get those VCR's ready again, according to The Unofficial Dreamworks Gladiator site new Gladiator previews will be aired during the Super Bowl. (Sorry - even Russell can't get some of us around here to have anything to do with American football!) (Thanks to Patricia)
According to the Hollywood Reporter, George Freeman, Russell's longtime U.S. agent at International Creative Management, has left the agency. Rumor has it he's headed for rival agency William Morris, but talks between the two have not been conducted. We'll keep you posted as to whether this means a move for Russell as well. (Thanks also to Lynn)
And finally (are you still with us?), here's one more photo of Russell and Jodie at the Golden Globes from the L.A. Times here (Click on the "Arrivals" link.) and one of Russell and Michael Mann here.
Some thoughts on the Golden Globes...
Despite all of the media buzz and critics' awards, The Insider failed to win anything. It must be a disappointment for Disney, which had hoped the movie would do well in the major awards to help counter the film's lackluster box office. Still, it seemed Russell and director Michael Mann -- who sat together in a table near the stage -- both were good sports. Russell was clearly in a good mood Sunday night, sporting an Armani tux and Harry Winston jewelry (along with a lucky charm, a little yellow platypus). He and his date for the evening, Jodie Foster, seemed to enjoy each other's company (anyone want to guess what he was whispering in her ear during the show?).
Russell was a true class act in how he handled losing the best actor award to Denzel Washington, his co-star in Virtuosity nearly five years ago. Russell, Denzel and Denzel's wife, Pauletta, were all smiles when Russell greeted the couple earlier in the night. Later, Russell even congratulated Denzel on his way to pick up his award.
We felt it important to bring this up because of disparaging (or even racist) comments that have gotten back to us about Russell's loss to Denzel. We can't and don't speak directly for Russell, but from what we do know about him, he would not approve. It's disappointing that he didn't win, but there are many more awards in his future. And we're sure Russell would want all his fans not to bemoan his loss, but rather to celebrate Denzel's victory for a brilliant performance.
Now, to reward all you who actually took the time to read all our drivel, we've posted an interview with Russell and Jodie, along with some screen captures from the NBC broadcast. You can find it all here . Enjoy! (Thanks to Lori C. for the interview)
We thought you might like to start the day off with a few new photos of Russell, seen here and here with Jodie Foster arriving at the Golden Globes.
One more photo and news about Russell at the Golden Globes from the Austrailan point of view in the Syndey Morning Herald. (Thanks to Marilyn)
And here is a gossip item from the New York Daily News. (Thanks to A)
Blowing Whistle on Duo
Here's a new duo that could be worth watching: Russell Crowe and Gina Gershon.
The two became friendly when they appeared together in the "The Insider," but now it looks as though they've kicked their relationship up a notch.
Crowe and Gershon were spotted the other night looking very cozy at the Palm restaurant in Los Angeles. Sources there tell me they were seated side by side cuddling and acting very affectionate.
Reps for each did not return calls for comment.
E! Entertainment TV will broadcast a Golden Globes pre-show with celebrity arrivals and interviews this Sunday starting at 6 pm EST and leading up to the awards telecast on NBC. Meanwhile, NBC will have its own pre-show starting at 7 pm EST. The awards start at 8 pm.
By the way, we know it's a bit superficial, but are you all as excited as we are about seeing Russell in his Armani tux Sunday night at the awards?
And for those of you who can't make it through a day without a new photo of Russell -- excite.com features one from the L.A. Critics awards here. (thanks to Seth)
The Anti-Cancer Council of Victoria (Australia) has chosen "The Insider" for a special screening to raise funds for cancer research as part of its statewide "Relay for Life" project. (See our Insider page for full details). (Thanks to Margaret / Centre for Behavioural Research in Cancer).
(Not sure what the Centre will think of this next item!!)
From USA Today:
"Tuesday from the National Board of Review in Manhattan . . . Russell Crowe, [winner of] best actor for his role as a tobacco industry whistle-blower in The Insider, lit up a cigarette at the podium for a few laughs. . ."
Yesterday, most of the U.S. entertainment shows had segments on the National Board of Review award ceremony. CNN's Show Biz Today had a clip of Russell being interviewed. You can find some screen captures here. And if you can, be sure to tape the same shows today for possible segments on the L.A. Critics awards Wednesday night and the Golden Globe awards, coming Sunday.
The Los Angeles Film Critics Association will hand out its 1999 film awards today, Jan. 19, at the Bel Age in L.A.. Russell already won for Best Actor; The Insider, Best Film and Christopher Plummer, Best Supporting Actor. Again, we want to remind you that you may want to watch the U.S. entertainment shows in case they feature highlights. The Golden Globe Award show publicity is starting to heat up as well.
Watch for "Resurrect My Radio" the first of the new MP3 downloads on gruntland.com coming soon! (See our item dated 1/15 for more details!)
Urban Cinefile features an interview with Al Pacino on The Insider, which opens in Australia on January 26th. (Be sure to see our news item of 1/7/00 for details about the benefit screenings.) You can read the interview here. (No mention of Russell). In case you missed them on our Insider page, they also have a link to the trailer here.
The National Board of Review will hand out its 1999 film awards today, Jan. 18, at Tavern on the Green in New York City. It will also announce the winner of its Best Film award. Russell already won for Best Actor, and The Insider is up for Best Film. You may want to tape the U.S. entertainment shows in case they show highlights tonight or tomorrow.
More 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts news! The new cd single will be available to purchase on the official site gruntland.com hopefully next week. Be sure to read our review, just added here! The Grunts will also be adding on MP3 some old songs that have never been formally released. The first will be out next week, and the songs may end up on a cd -- eventually. (Thanks to the Grunts!)
Proof of Life starts principal photography February 28. It will be filmed in Ecuador, Poland and Peru, with the production and post-production office in London. Just added to the cast: David Caruso (former NYPD Blue star) and David Morse, who was in The Negotiator with Kevin Spacey (L.A. Confidential). (Thanks to fayanne!)
Click on the photo (left) to see a larger version of that great smile, from the current issue of Entertainment Weekly (U.S., Jan 21-28, 2000).
The current issue of Variety (January 10 - 16) features another new full-page ad for The Insider. This time it's promoting Best Picture, Screenplay and Director. The photo features Russell and will be available for viewing here tomorrow. (Sorry -- we have to sleep occasionally!!)
A little bit of advance notice! There's a photo of Russell and Ridley Scott on the set of Gladiator, and a little blurb about the film, in tomorrow's issue of Entertainment Weekly (U.S., page 41). (Thanks to A)
In case you didn't see the show yesterday, click the photo to see more images from Access Hollywood.
NEW FLASH!!! Two men were arrested in a scheme to extort $200,000 (AUS) from Russell in exchange for the video from the infamous brawl of November 18th. Read all about it here. (Is it just us, or did the whole thing sound like a setup right from the beginning?!!)
The Grunts wanted us to remind everyone to keep your eyes on their official site, gruntland.com, because the long-awaited new single will be available for sale there any day now, as well as a "new MP3 download of a different song."
The Insider news is starting to heat up Down Under. Urban Cinefile announced that they will soon be featuring an interview with Al Pacino. For all of you in Australia and New Zealand, your wait for the film is almost over! And for those of you in Sydney who may have missed it, scroll to our news item dated Jan. 7 for information on the benefit screenings!
TV Alert! Access Hollywood will feature a spot on Gladiator tomorrow (Jan 12). Check local listings for times. Thanks to Chris, Lex and Rachel!)
Short article about Russell: Taming of the Crowe on today's Canada Canoe.com / Jam Show Biz.
The newest issue of Movieline (Feb., U.S.) has a tiny photo of Russell. Not sure it is worth running out to buy. (Not sure it was even worth making a news item!!)
Fayanne tells us that yesterday's Hollywood Reporter featured yet another "For Your Consideration" ad for Russell. And their Chief Film Critic had this to say about his choices for best actor nominations:
"Russell Crowe has made at least one decision easy. His turn as tobacco-industry whistle blower Jeffrey Wigand in 'The Insider' is simply one of the best acting performances I've ever seen anywhere. He gives us a true hero whose many flaws make him only that much more heroic."
Lisa Gerrard, who along with Pieter Bourke, has been nominated for a Golden Globe for The Insider soundtrack, has been hired by Ridley Scott to write some songs for Gladiator.
This just in, thanks to Mal and Charlene. Today's USA Today features an article and this photo of Russell. (Sharp eyes will notice the Grunts somehow managed to lose 10 feet in this story!)
The National Society of Film Critics has voted Russell as best actor for "The Insider"! The New York-based group is made up of 53 movie critics from across the United States. (Thanks Thalya)
Unfortunately, the February issue of Premiere magazine (U.S.) isn't as kind. The highly respected magazine lists its "best bets" for a nomination, and Russell (best actor), Christopher Plummer (supporting actor) and the film (best picture) are all cited as "wild cards" rather than shoo-ins for a nomination. The reason: The Insider's weak box office could seriously hurt its chances among Oscar voters. So far the film has only made about $26 million even though it's been in North American theaters for more than two months. It opens in Australia January 26.
The official site of Russell's band, 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts, has updated with a special announcement. They're currently working on an archive page that will have more downloads available, including past recordings AND never-before-heard songs! You can visit the official site here.
And coming soon, our review of the new single, on sale soon at the Grunts' official site!
For those of you who had trouble downloading the Gladiator teaser trailer via the link first posted here, it's now available in three different bandwiths on the movie's official site here.
The Insider will have its first public screenings in Sydney to benefit the human rights group Amnesty International. The screenings will be held at 1 pm on Sunday, January 23, at two Sydney locations: the Palace Academy Twin, Paddington and the Norton Street Cinema, Leichhardt. Tickets are $15, and are on sale now at the locations. Or you can reserve tickets by telephone. The numbers are: Academy Twin, 02 9331 3457; or Norton Street Cinema, 02 9564 5620. We can't confirm whether Russell will be at either screening, but we'll keep you posted.
The film opens in Australia on January 26.
We promised Courtney that we'd also mention that the popular New York newspaper the Village Voice ranked Russell's performance as second-best of the year (behind Hilary Swank in Boys Don't Cry), and The Insider is ranked 12th best film of the year.
The latest issue of Entertainment Weekly (U.S.), on stands today, (Kevin Spacey on the cover) features oscar contenders. The Insider is mentioned as likely nominee for actor, supporting actor, director and film. All the photos are from the film, nothing you haven't seen before!
More ads! This time from Daily Variety (1/5/00). Russell makes the cover! Thanks to Fayanne you can see it here.
The January 3-9 issue of Variety is just full of Russell news! In addition to the full page Oscar ad you see here, (click on photo to see larger version) he was mentioned in two articles, "Wonders from Down Under" and "Contenders Ready to Battle." We've added the bigger of the two articles here.
The Saturday NY Times also featured a full-page ad for Gladiator, this time in black and white. You can see it here. (Scroll)
Special treat today, thanks to Ann! Check out these screen captures from the Australian TV show "Neighbours" featuring our very own, very young Russell here!
Russell wins more accolades for The Insider! Two more "Best of 1999" lists of note are the New York Times and the entertainment writers of the Associated Press. Meanwhile, Newsweek (January 10, 2000, US) has named Russell best actor of 1999, and had this to say about his performance:
Russell Crowe's complex portrait of an odd man out in corporate America proved the versatility of this powerful Australian actor.
Runners-up were Jim Carrey and three former Russell co-stars: Jim Broadbent (Rough Magic), Denzel Washington (Virtuosity) and Kevin Spacey (L.A. Confidential).
As promised yesterday, here is the newspaper ad for Gladiator. Click on the photo to see a larger version. (Thanks to TJ!)
Check out our new Fan Art page, added last week!
Annie was nice enough to send in this item from the Dec. 31, 1999, issue of L.A. Weekly. It was in the critics' list of the best films of 1999. The film is turning up on a number of "Best of 1999" lists, even critic Roger Ebert's (he ranked it 10th). The L.A. Weekly item:
"The Insider. More than an expertly directed thriller with Al Pacino in top (rather than over-the-top) form, Michael Mann's film was one of the few big deals this year that was actually about something -- the abuse of corporate power. And took a position. And had the wit to give Russell Crowe the role of his career as the nerdy whistle blower who stood up to the tobacco barons."
1/1/00: Happy New Year! We hope you all had a happy, safe celebration of the new millennium!
Now for our first news of a brand-new century! In case you haven't done so yet, you may want to preview the new song samples at the official site of Russell's band, 30 Odd Foot of Grunts. The samples will be taken down soon, as the new single will be available for sale VERY soon! You can download the songs at the Grunts' site here.
12/29/99: Last week's New Idea (Australia) had a mention of Russell's plans for New Year's Eve. Maximus partying with Obi-Wan Kenobi???? And we'd love to be a fly on the wall when Russell spots Bryan Brown! Thanks to Katrina for sending in the following:
"Kerry Packer's luxury ship, the Artic P, and Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman's own state of the art yacht, will be well placed to view the [New Year's] celebrations.
Guests including Elle Macpherson and her partner Arkie Busson, Russell Crowe, Ewan McGregor, Rachel Ward and Bryan Brown, Antonia Kidman and husband Angus Hawley, Baz Luhrmann and wife Catherine Martin, Lizzy Gardiner and fashion designer Collette Dinnigan, will be boat hopping between the lavish party vessels, all just a champagne cork away from each other on the big night.
Kerry Packer's boat, a former ice breaker, won't be the prettiest yacht on the harbour, but she will certainly be one of the most luxurious. Refitted at a cost of $40 million, she has ensuite rooms, complete with jacuzzi, a swimming pool, cinema and helipad.
Joining the Packers, including Gretel and newlyweds James and Jodie, will be billionaire Microsoft chief Bill Gates and former boss of FAI, Rodney Adler."
For a view of Sydney Harbour live from dusk to dawn on NYE, go to the Celebration Cam.
12/27/99: The January/February 2000 Cinescape magazine (U.S./ Canada) we told you about last month has finally hit newsstands. You can find the Ridley Scott interview with some new Gladiator photos here. The mag also features a full page on Russell. You can find it (both the photo and the interview) as our Featured Photo here.
'60 Minutes' correspondent Mike Wallace was on Larry King Live last week and of course did more griping about The Insider -- although it seems he was at least kind about Russell. Thanks to Katherine for sending in the following report:
"Wednesday's Larry King show featured Mike Wallace and the Insider was the first topic. While Wallace is still personally "miffed"that facts regarding his actions were altered to dramatize the movie, he particularly liked the acting job that Russell Crowe did in interpreting Jeffrey Wigand. It's unfortunate that neither Wallace nor King could remember Crowe's name but both thought he would win an Oscar. Wallace is still rather pointedly commenting (as has he and Don Hewitt in past print interviews) on how "disappointed" the studio must be in that the movie has yet to make back its production costs, and King said that the word on poor box office was due to the subject being attractive only to audiences in the over 40 demographic."
12/25/99: To those who celebrate it, we'd like to wish our visitors around the world a very Merry Christmas! And thanks to ALL OF YOU for your support and kind greetings!!
12/23/99: Want to see Gladiator previews? Click here. (Thanks to chenzzo)
12/22/99: It appears that the official Gladiator website is now coming together. To see it, click here! And when you're done (and if you haven't already) check out our Gladiator pages.
The Broadcast Film Critics Association named Russell as Best Actor and the Insider as one of the top 10 films of 1999. The actual best picture winner will be revealed at a ceremony on January 24 in Beverly Hills.
On2 will videotape the event and then later post celebrity interviews and clips from the winning films on its site. The Broadcast Film Critics Association is the largest group of television, radio and online film critics in the United States.
There have been conflicting reports about the Australian release dates for Mystery, Alaska and The Insider. Urban Cinefile now reports that Mystery, Alaska will open on Feb. 24 rather than Jan. 1, and it sets The Insider release date as Jan. 27 rather than Feb. 3. We can't confirm which dates are correct, but we'll keep you posted.
12/20/99: Big news again today! Russell has been nominated for a Golden Globe Award as best actor. The Insider had a total of 5 nominations: best dramatic picture; best dramatic actor; best director, Michael Mann; best screenplay, Mann and Eric Roth; and best score, Lisa Gerraro and Pieter Bourke. (Associated Press)
The 57th Annual Golden Globe Awards presentation will be telecast live on NBC, on Sunday, Jan. 23, 2000 (7-11 p.m. EST) from Los Angeles.
Nominations were read by Salma Hayek (Breaking Up)
Russell will be competing against former co-stars Denzel Washington (Virtuosity) and Kevin Spacey (L.A. Confidential). For the complete list of nominations click here.
12/19/99: As promised yesterday, click here and scroll to see the new Variety ad for the Insider. (Al Pacino is pictured.) Not only is Russell being promoted for Best Actor, but they refer to him as "the marvelous Russell Crowe"
Golden Globe nominations will be announced early am tomorrow (Monday). We hope to have some great news to post when we wake up. We promise we will let you know as soon as we can!
12/18/99: Time to run to your newsstands again. The "Best of 1999" issue of Entertainment Weekly (December 24/31, U.S.) features Russell in its "Great Performances" section. You can see the photo here. (It's from the same photo session as our home page photos.)
"Crowe transforms his lusty machismo into Jeffrey Wigand's sallow anguish, conjuring a performance brimming with flint and terror And like fellow alchemist De Niro, he makes it look confoundingly easy."
The November issue of DGA Magazine (Director's Guild of America) features an interview with Michael Mann (The Insider). Russell shares the cover, as seen here.
Mann has this to say when asked to what extent a director can "take credit when an actor shines so brightly."
". . . let me be clear, Russell Crowe's brilliance in that role ultimately rests on his talent. I just helped him get to where he wanted to be."
The Oscar campaign has started now in earnest. Variety (December 13-19) features a full page Insider ad (Al Pacino is pictured) promoting the film for all of the major catagories of nominations. Both Russell and Al are featured for best actor. (We will post the ad asap.)
12/16/99: Planning to send Russell a gift this Christmas? Want to ask for an autograph? Please read this special announcement first! See it here.
The Oscar nominations aren't until February, but the prediction talk is already at a fever pitch. Everyone seems to be writing about them, but we thought you might find today's piece in the NY Post interesting. Not only is Russell mentioned as one of the five front-runner's for best actor, his former co-stars Denzel Washington (Virtuosity) , Kevin Spacey (L.A. Confidential) and Jim Broadbent (Rough Magic) are as well! 4 out of 5 -- not bad! (Al Pacino (The Insider) is listed as one of the "possibles".) You can read the complete article here.
12/15/99: The Movie Page has some interesting production art for Gladiator. Let's just say, it definitely gets the point across that this movie isn't for the squeamish! You can find the art here.
Meanwhile, despite all the recent awards for the film and its stars (see our related news section for the latest),'The Insider' failed to draw many more U.S. filmgoers this weekend. It finally fell out of the top 10 box-office list in its sixth week of release.
12/12/99: Great news today! Congratulations to Russell and everyone involved in the film! (The following is from the Associated Press).
"The Los Angeles Film Critics Association on Saturday named 'The Insider', a film about the tobacco industry, the best picture of the year. The film also took best actor and supporting actor awards.
Russell Crowe, named best actor of the year last week by the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures, got the nod for playing a cigarette company employee-turned-whistleblower who blasted his former bosses on '60 Minutes.'
Christopher Plummer was named best supporting actor."
Cinematographer Dante Spinotti won for his work as well.
As we reported earlier, the Los Angeles Times printed a hard-hitting story on The Insider. (See news item 12/6/99) Now Lowell Bergman responds with his own letter to the Times. You can find it all here. (Thanks to TJ)
Read what Bernard Weinraub of the New York Times News Service has to say about the poor box office the film has generated in his article: "Top reviews fail to make 'The Insider' a box-office hit" here.
12/11/99: Entertainment Tonight (US) showed a sneak preview of Gladiator on Friday, including never-before-seen shots from the upcoming film. Those who caught it also got an earful of Russell's, um, "accent" in the film. As expected, the movie looks quite violent, but director Ridley Scott's attention to both grandeur and detail are also apparent. Look for the teaser to show up on the Internet soon. (We'll keep you posted.) In the meantime, we've added some screen captures from ET as well as comments from a visitor who attended a preview screening of Gladiator awhile back. It's not a review, but the comments -- along with the new photos -- are on our Fan Review page here. (Thanks to Rachel for the tip about ET!)
Great news today!! The first awards are in! The National Board of Review has selected Russell as Best Actor for his performance in The Insider. The film also won the Freedom of Expression Award. You can read the complete story and see the other winners here. (Thanks to Suzie)
View the Australian Insider trailer here.
Hopefully the above good news will soften the blow for Russell. The Australian Federal Court ruled against his beloved Rabbitohs today. For more info click here and scroll.
For all of our friends in the UK: The January 2000, Millennium Issue of Empire Magazine (Johnny Depp is on the cover ) features The Insider in their "Future Films" section. The film is scheduled to open in the UK on March 10, 2000 and the magazine is available now.
12/6/99: (Second update today!)
As we reported earlier, last Friday, the Los Angeles Times printed a hard-hitting story on The Insider, its controversies involving the real 60 Minutes, the film's "disappointing" box office thus far, and the filmmakers' hope for major awards in coming months. The article, which had a few scathing remarks from Mike Wallace and 60 Minutes producer Don Hewitt, apparently did not sit well with director Michael Mann and screenwriter Eric Roth. On Monday, the Times printed Mann and Roth's rebuttal of Friday's article. You can find them both here.
Preliminary U.S. box-office reports show that The Insider tied for 8th over the weekend, earning another $1.4 million. That would bring its total to $23.9 million. Meanwhile, on Friday a New York Times article reported that Disney is still hoping that the film will attract enough Academy Award nominations to help bolster its box office following its initial run. (Which would more than imply that the studio is planning to re-release it in the U.S.) The paper reportedly quoted Disney Chairman Joe Roth as saying Oscar noms could do for The Insider what they did for films like Braveheart and even L.A. Confidential, which also didn't do well initially. However, Roth said, "It's like walking up a hill with a refrigerator on your back. . . . The fact of the matter is we're really proud we did this movie."
Until (or unless) Russell speaks publicly about the Saloon Bar incident, we've decided not to post any more extraneous information or links about it. We must stress that this is our decision, not anyone else's. We should also point out that the Daily Telegraph, the source of many of the stories so far, is controlled by News Ltd., which also owns a controlling interest in The National Rugby League. The South Sydney Rabbitohs club, of which Russell is an ardent supporter, is currently battling the NRL in court to stay in the league next season.
The Daily Telegraph has another article that tries to exploit the Saloon Bar incident a few weeks ago. Click here and then scroll.
We've added the Who magazine article here. (thanks to Katrina)
We've also added a photo of the man involved in the bar incident with Russell. You can find that picture here. (Thanks to Lorrie)
Today's L.A. Times Calendar section features lengthy and interesting article about The Insider. For those of you who can't get the newspaper, you can read it here. (Thanks to Jonsson)
The upcoming January/February issue of Cinescape magazine will have a feature on the making of Gladiator.
This is a little late in coming (sorry to you in Australia!) but Katrina wrote in to tell us that there are two photos of Russell (one with Nicole Kidman and one with Danielle Spencer from The Crossing) in last week's Australian Woman's Day magazine.
Disney has not given up on The Insider just yet. In addition to the new TV spots, they have begun running a new print ad. You can see the larger version, as well as read our new Insider fan reviews here.
Preliminary U.S. box-office reports show that The Insider came in ninth over the long holiday weekend, earning another $3.3 million.
The Sunday Telegraph had an exclusive interview with the man who claims he was attacked by Russell outside an Australian bar two weeks ago. The article does not include statements from Russell in his defense, but because of the interest in this story, we've decided to report on it anyway. There aren't many more details than what has already been reported, except that the man, a 28-year-old student, claims he had to have surgery on his thumb following the incident. The article also says that Russell has given his statement to police, but it did not give details of the statement. If you want to read the full article, you can find it here. (You have to scroll to the article, titled "Hollywood star's crazed attack on student") Again, please note the article is very one-sided.
Meanwhile, the South Sydney Rabbitohs headed back to court Monday in their battle to stay in the National Rugby League. The hearing is expected to last three to four days. There is a short article on it here.
An unfortunate event that would be best left unnoticed, is now turning up everywhere. Mr. Showbiz has nothing new to report, but is just another in a growing list to mention the brawl. (Read the articles he is referring to in our item dated 11/24.)
We have some very unflattering news today and if you don't care to see Russell in such a manner, we strongly suggest you don't read the linked item. (In other words, it is your choice to read it, so please don't complain to us for posting it!) We have always been taught to never believe everything we read, and we certainly hope in this case that old adage is true! But we also feel it is news.
Russell's Brawl Caught on Tape (The Daily Telegraph).
This photo was taken at the auction mentioned in our previous item. To see the larger version go to our Rabbitohs page here. (thanks to Wade)
An auction/fund-raiser for the South Sydney Rabbitohs was held Saturday night, raising nearly $300,000 to aid the club's fight to stay in the National Rugby League. Russell attended, of course, and showed his support by successfully bidding on a couple of items. Among them was the timekeeper's bell used at Souths' first rugby league match in 1908. Russell shelled out $42,000 for the historic piece, which was the highest sale price on the night. Meanwhile, the Rabbitohs headed to court today to block the league from excluding them next season. For the full story on the auction, check out the Sydney Morning Herald site here. (Special thanks to Dave Crowe)
Preliminary U.S. box-office reports show that The Insider came in seventh over the weekend, earning another $2.9 million for a three-week total of $18.4 million.
We can't believe how much mail we received regarding the photo from the AFI awards! Considering the photo wasn't ours (we only linked to it) and the fact that Russell has not publicly stated who his date was, we don't want to disrespect his privacy. (To be honest, we were suprised so many of you didn't recognize her!) For those of you still so curious you can't stand it, we left a hint on our home page. Happy hunting! (And you didn't hear it from us!!)
A followup to our reports about Russell's appearance at the Australian Institute Awards last weekend (see items dated 11/13 and 11/15): The Age has an interesting report/analysis about the Bryan Brown/Russell "incident" at the AFI awards last weekend and the issues it raised regarding the state of Australian cinema. To view the article, click here. (Thanks to Cary)
We've added some new press interviews with Russell (and new photos!) on our Inprint page here.
And if you still want more, there's another interview with Russell at celebritystars.com here! (thanks to Marla)
Roughcut has a Q-and-A with Diane Venora (The Insider). In it, she describes what it's like to work with Russell (well, we THINK that's what she's describing!). Find it here.
The Insider was well-received at its European premiere Sunday night in London. Director Michael Mann unveiled the movie as the surprise film at the London Film Festival, and he answered questions after the screening. Among the revelations (not a big surprise to Russell fans) was that he and Russell both remain avid smokers, and would even rush out for a smoke between takes. The film opens in the U.K. on March 10.
Meanwhile, the film moved further down the U.S. box-office ladder over the weekend, finishing sixth overall with $5 million in tickets sold. The two-week total is $14.1 million, and the film is being called a disappointment for Disney.
The SBS site has posted photos from the AFI awards this past weekend, including Russell, Jack Thompson (Sum Of Us), John Polson (Sum of Us), Jacqueline McKenzie (Romper Stomper), Bryan Brown (Blood Oath aka Prisoners of the Sun) , Lisa Hensley and more! You can find them all here. (If you missed our report about the show, be sure to read the news item from 11/13 below).
More controversy involving The Insider. In Friday's Wall Street Journal, Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp. bought a full-page newspaper ad condemning the movie, particularly scenes in which it appears the company is threatening the life and family of former executive Jeffrey Wigand, played by Russell in the film. The ad also hints at legal action against Disney, the studio that made the film. A new article on our Inside r : In Print page tells more about the ad and B&W's chances of winning a lawsuit.
Russell attended the AFI awards in Australia last night. Dressed in what looked like the same suit he wore all over the U.S., he presented best acting awards late in the evening with Jacqueline McKenzie, his co-star in Romper Stomper. The evening was not without its controversies. Bryan Brown, who starred with Russell in Blood Oath (aka Prisoners of the Sun), won for best supporting actor for his work in Two Hands (the big winner of the night overall). In accepting his award, Bryan had some scathing remarks about the opening of the new Fox Studios, Australia, and was critical of those Australian performers he thinks are not doing enough to support Australian cinema. He listed a slew of people he feels have supported their native industry, among them Jack Thompson (Sum Of Us) and Toni Collette (Spotswood aka The Efficiency Expert). But there were several famous names Bryan seemed to purposely overlook, including Nicole Kidman and Russell himself. (To be fair, Bryan did say at the end of his speech that there were others he'd failed to mention.) The cameraman, either by coincidence or noticing the oversight, immediately panned to Russell. Bryan's speech did not seem to go over well with Russell, who's had kind words to say about Bryan in the past. When it was his turn at the microphone, Russell had this to say in response to Bryan's speech:
"On behalf of Nicole Kidman and myself, I'd just like to say it's ok Bryan -- you're young, over-excited and unaccustomed to such praise. I would like to point out however folks, based on sweat and commitment and hard work, there is a bridge that exists between the Australian film industry and the world. If you cross that bridge, that does not make you less Australian. That simply amplifies the broad nature and infinite nature of Australian film culture, and you should all join in celebrating what the world knows."
An obviously flustered Russell then went on to flub the name of the next award. And that was the last we saw of him.
Russell is scheduled to be a presenter at the 1999 Australian Film Institute awards ceremony on Saturday Nov. 13 (Australia). The event will be broadcast live on SBS Television from Fox Studios, Australia. A live webcast is also planned and it will include exclusive material not featured in the TV broadcast. The webcast begins about 7:30pm AEST (Australian time), and will last about three hours. In U.S. time zones, that would be Friday Nov. 12 at (we're guessing) about 12:30 a.m. Pacific time and 3:30 a.m. Eastern. You'll need the G2 version of RealPlayer software to view the webcast, and you need the Vivo plug-in to view clips from the nominated films. To view the live webcast, click here.
A visitor was kind enough to give us this inside report on what we all DIDN'T see during Russell's appearance on The Tonight show Wednesday night! (special thanks to Ruth)
"During commercial breaks, Jay [Leno] and Russell continued to talk. Actually, Russell did most of the talking. He really seemed to be in an upbeat, laugh-a-lot mood.
During the Mavericks' song, Jay and Russell went over to the edge of the stage to watch them. Jay bobs his head left to right, in time with the music. Russell bobs his head up and down, keeps both hands in his pockets, and taps his left foot. At the end of the show, it looked like Russell offered the blue guest chair to the Mavericks' lead singer, Raul Malo, but Raul declined. Later, Russell also said a few words to Paul Deakin (the drummer) and Nick Kane (the guitarist).
After taping three promo pieces, everyone walked off stage. Russell turned before exiting and, looking up at the audience in the balcony seats, waved good-bye to them. A nice gesture, from a friendly, NOT arrogant, guy."
The November issue of George magazine (U.S.) features a 5 page article on The Insider. (Includes one small photo of Russell as Wigand in a group shot with Jeffrey Wigand, Al Pacino and Lowell Bergman. You can see the same photo on our Insider: Images page 5.)
Tomorrow (Friday, Nov. 12) on The Rosie O'Donnell Show: The cast of the Insider! (Russell's appearance not confirmed)
Russell gets a full page in the Dec/Jan 2000 issue of Movieline magazine (US)! It's not an interview -- he's on the magazine's list of "21 Sex Symbols for the 21st Century." The cover is the special pull-out type, with a tiny pic of Russell and the other choices on the inside flap. (Courteney Cox Arquette is on the main cover.) It's the same photo you can find on our home page (the "peekaboo" pic, that is).
Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp. has released a statement in response to The Insider. Now, before we get any angry e-mails questioning why we added this, just remember we are not endorsing B&W's comments, we are merely reporting them. And just in case there is some disgruntled tobacco executive out there who thinks we're insulting his or her industry, please, no bullets in our mailboxes! Read the full statement on our Insider: Articles page here.
For those of you with Real Audio players you can listen to the National Public Radio (NPR) program All Things Considered review of The Insider online here (thanks to Maggie)
Another glowing review of Russell on MSNBC here Exerpt:
"All the President"s Men" has a livelier set of characters, but not better acting. Russell Crowe gives one of the finest performances in modern films as Wigand. (Thanks to Heidi)
We'd like to thank Lulu, a regular visitor and constant source of news, for this Insider-related recap of Florida's battle with Big Tobacco:
"The judge presiding over the tobacco lawsuit in Florida has forbidden jurors to watch "The Insider." In the meantime, Brown and Williamson is spending millions in a publicity campaign to which plaintiff lawyers claim jurors are exposed without constraints. A survey in which "The Insider" moviegoers were being asked all sort of tobacco-issue questions (had the movie affected how they now viewed Brown & Williamson, etc.) was stopped by theater management in Miami although it apparently was conducted without a hitch in other cities such as Los Angeles and New York. The fracas seems to have fueled interest in the movie and the whole affair has become a popular topic in South Florida."
Box office figures are in, and The Insider did fairly well its opening weekend. It came in fourth, earning $7 million ($3,875 per screen). According to distributor Buena Vista Pictures, the audience was 80 percent couples and 85 percent above age 25. The top film overall was The Bone Collector, starring Russell's Virtuosity co-star Denzel Washington. It made $17.2 million ($6,643 per screen).
This Monday, November 8, at 9 p.m. ET (6 p.m. PT), director Michael Mann will chat live about The Insider and his career on The Insider's official site. An added bonus for those of you with Real Audio: Along with reading the chat on your screen like everyone else, you'll also be able to listen to Mann as he answers. Among his other credits are "Heat," "Manhunter," "The Last of the Mohicans," and the TV show "Miami Vice." For all you new visitors out there, even if you can't make the chat with Mann be sure to check out the official site, which has lots of goodies including notes from the script, Quicktime interviews, a screensaver, and even the original Vanity Fair article that inspired the film. (Just be prepared to wait while it all downloads. Though it looks good and has great content, the site isn't very user-friendly!)
Take a deep breath, be sure you are sitting down and then check out these brand new photos of Russell taken in New York City last week. (Special thanks to Neicie)
This photo is from the 5 page spread on The Insider in Entertainment Weekly (U.S., Nov. 12th) available NOW. (We will post the highlights about Russell as soon as we can!)
For anyone who may have forgotten, (how is that possible?) The Insider opens today in North America. For all you others out there, check out our Insider pages and see some great new stills from the film as well as many new articles and reviews just added.
Photo: Russell with Michael Mann from The Insider premiere. (Weekly Variety)
For those of you in the Washington D.C. area, there will be an Insider premiere tonight, once again featuring all of the stars, including Russell. Those of you not in the D.C. area, keep your eyes on the entertainment shows for (hopefully) more coverage! (Thanks to Jenn and Lulu)
More reasons to visit your news stands! Reviews of the Insider in the Nov. 8th issues of the following U.S. editions: The New Yorker Magazine (2 and half pages by David Denby with a caricature of Pacino, Crowe and Plummer).
Newsweek (No photos of Russell)
People Magazine (which gives the film People's highest rating) see the photo of Russell and Al Pacino here.
REMINDER: Watch for a 5 page Insider feature in Entertainment Weekly (US) in the new issue on newstands Friday, November 5th. Russell will be spotlighted! (Please note: this is subject to change, so look before you purchase! Thanks to A)
A few links for you to visit:
Chicago Sun Times, interview with Russell here (Thanks to Venita and Maggie)
Sydney Morning Herald, photo of Russell and Al Pacino at the premier here.
Rolling Stone quicktime exclusive: Peter Travers at the Movies here.
This report just in from frequent reviewer mad maxine, who returned from a press screening of The Insider and has stopped hyperventilating long enough to tell us "There is no praise high enough for Russell's performance in this film . . . It is everything we have hoped for and yet again proves that he is one of the finest of contemporary actors. You should all run (don't walk) to your nearest multiplex."
11/3/99: Reminder: Russell is on Live with Regis and Kathie Lee today!
Yesterday, most of the entertainment shows featured segments on the New York premiere of The Insider, which was held Monday night. To see photos, visit our TV Scrapbook! (Thanks Neicie) Meanwhile, the New York Post's Page Six has a brief item today on the Insider premiere party held at the Four Seasons. In the item, Russell shows off his rapier wit once again -- and his apparent boredom with the whole controversy surrounding the film.
"[Jeffrey] Wigand's on-screen counterpart, Russell Crowe, couldn't be bothered with questions of veracity: "I'm not interested in discussing anybody's comments about the film." Did that mean he wouldn't talk about the picture at all? Crowe answered, "Are you deaf, mate? You're not deaf, are you?" He then volunteered to "chat about other things" if we liked. We declined." (NY Post)
There is a small item about the advance screening of Gladiator that was held in Southern California, on Oz's Urban Cinefile. (Is it just us, or does that photo look a bit familiar?) Watch for our fan review of the film, coming soon!
11/2/99: For those of you who don't already know, Russell's appearance on Good Morning America didn't pan out yesterday, apparently because of continuing coverage of the tragic EgyptAir crash this past weekend. However, Russell did appear on the Rosie O'Donnell show. Topics included The Insider, of course, and some of the criticism it's gotten from people at 60 Minutes. He said the film will surely be controversial, but for Disney and director Michael Mann, "It's not a risky situation because it's just the truth." Also, Russell talked about gaining weight ("42, 43 pounds") for the film. He said (playfully of course) that putting on the weight was "sooo enjoyable, man. Six weeks of bourbon and cheeseburgers, oh damn!" Still, he said the weight took him "six weeks to gain and five and a half months to get it off" for his role in Gladiator.
Russell also told a funny story that Christopher Plummer had once told him on the set. It involved Plummer, his new girlfriend at the time, and her former boyfriend, the late actor Peter Finch. Russell made an aside to the audience, telling them that Finch was the talented Aussie actor who won an Academy Award for Network. Russell's respect for Finch, as well as for Plummer, seemed genuine. Then, a rather lengthy clip from The Insider was shown, featuring Russell and co-star Al Pacino. On the personal side, Russell again discussed his recent 4,000-mile trip across Australia on his motorcycle, and he and Rosie debated the virtues of Harley-Davidsons vs. Hondas. Overall, it was a subdued interview, as well as shorter than his last appearance on the show. Of course, this time he didn't have Alec Baldwin hamming it up from backstage! But it was a semi-serious discussion centered on a serious film. Rosie's official site has two photos from the chat. Click here and follow the link to Rosie's Scrapbook.
If you haven't already done so, be sure to check out the official 30 Odd Foot of Grunts site for two brand-new music downloads, Inside Her Eyes and The Legend of Barry Kable. You can also download your very-own Grunts CD cover! You can find it all here.
The Sunday Los Angeles Times had a lengthy interview with Russell yesterday. You can read it and see the photo here!
10/31/99: Today's New York Times, Arts & Leisure section features a FULL TWO PAGE AD (!!) on The Insider. (Unfortunately it is too large for us to include here). First page features a photo of Russell, (same as the poster), and the second, Al Pacino. If you haven't already seen the poster photos, you can view them on our Insider pages here and on the official site. Looks like the studio is fully behind this film! Here are some highlights of the quotes in the ad:
"Crowe delivers one of the richest characterizations that any recent movie has had to offer. Genuinely riveting." - Glenn Kenny, Premiere
"Russell Crowe scores a triumph in his portrayal of Jeffrey Wigand." - Steven Farber, Movieline
"Pacino and Crowe ought to be Oscar contenders." - Leonard Maltin, Playboy
"'The Insider' is the best film of the year." - Bonnie Churchill, National News Network
"Two Thumbs Up" - Roger Ebert & The Movies.
"'The Insider' will pin you to your seat... riveting suspense...dynamite performances, strafing wit and dramatic provocation..." - Pat Travers, Rolling Stone
"The most powerful film of the year!" - Jason Miller, ABC TV
Just another reminder to everyone in the U.S: Russell on TV tomorrow (Monday): Good Morning America and Rosie O'Donnell. (Check local listings for times)
Also, another reminder to watch for the two brand-new free downloads coming November 1 from Russell's band, 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts, on their official site!
10/30/99: For those of you who missed The Insider premiere, you can see photos from it on our TV Scrapbook (page 2) here (thanks to Neicie) as well as some from the news wires.
Associated press here .
Excite here. (there are several great photos at this site.)
Still want to see more photos of Russell? (Who doesn't?!) check out these rare vintage photos just added to our new Scrapbook: Rocky Horror Show page!
10/29/99: MORE ADDED!! Get those VCR's ready to go into overdrive! Watch for Russell on Good Morning America, Monday, Nov. 1st and Live with Regis & Kathie Lee on Wednesday Nov. 3rd. (thanks to Lee)
Talk show recap:
Good Morning America: Monday, Nov. 1
Rosie O'Donnell: Monday, Nov. 1
Regis and Kathie Lee: Wednesday, Nov. 3
Leno: Wednesday, Nov. 10
(Please note: TV appearances are apt to change at the last minute, so always check your local listings to confirm. Also please note that TV appearances listed are U.S. unless otherwise noted.)
Jeffrey Wells has this to say about Gladiator at reel.com's Hollywood Confidential: "Next Summer's Heat"
"Audiences haven't seen anything like this in decades ÷ literally. I reviewed the script several months ago, and ran a report from a recent screening in San Diego, and all signs are "go." Across-the-board appeal but seems ideally suited to tastes of middle-aged guys who own DVDs of Ben-Hur, Spartacus, Demetrius and the Gladiators, etc."
Today's New York Times has an interview with director Michael Mann (The Insider). In it he explains his vision for the film and gives some insight into how he wanted to portray Jeffrey Wigand, whom Russell plays in the film. You can find the article here.
Dark Horizons has posted reviews of a screening of Gladiator held this week. It also has a new review of The Insider. Find them here.
For anyone in Australia who may have missed it: set those VCR's! L.A. Confidential will be on channel Nine, Sunday 8.30pm. Check local listings for times.
10/28/99: MORE ADDED!!! Russell is scheduled to appear on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno on Wednesday, November 10. Elle Macpherson gets "top billing" (What is up with that ??) and The Mavericks are the musical guests.
Entertainment Weekly (US) features a review of The Insider in the new issue on newstands tomorrow, and watch for a 5 page feature on the film the following week. (On stands Friday November 5th). Russell will be spotlighted! (But won't be on the cover). We will remind you again next week. (Please note: these are subject to change. Thanks to A)
E! News Daily had an interview with Russell yesterday. We don't have the transcript (sorry!), but we do have photos! Check them out in our TV Scrapbook. (Thanks to Neicie)
Still more bad news for The Rabbitohs! Read Russell's response to the current crisis, just added to our South Sydney Rabbitohs page. (Scroll to read: "Souths' Star on the Wane Says Crowe". Thanks to Wade)
Coming November 1! Russell's band, 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts, will have two brand-new, "funkified" recordings available as free downloads on their official site!
One of our Canadian visitors wanted us to let everyone know that the Time magazine with Russell is the U.S. version. For those of you outside the U.S., you can still see the photo on our site and read the article here. (thanks to Marne)
Ted Casablanca has a brief mention of Russell in his gossip column on the E Online site. (Thanks to Cy for the early tip!) This is what Ted had to say about our favorite Kiwi (Gee, Ted, can't you take a joke?!)
"It's no secret the 60 Minutes-bashin' flick, The Insider, has a pretty good buzz. But what you may not be aware of is the fact that one of its stars, Russell Crowe, thinks he's going to ride that swell word of mouth straight to the podium at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.
Crowe, a traditionally underrated actor indeed, was asked if he felt his performance might garner him a chance at that golden calf called Oscar.
"Of course, I'm going to win," he snapped.
Some snitty Academy voter's gonna shoot that Crowe right down, if he doesn't watch his beak a little better."
Photo from the November issue of InStyle Magazine. (Thanks to Charlie)
10/26/99: Once again we're first on the web! Be sure to check out our brand-new page for Russell's next film, Proof of Life, and read the Vanity Fair article that inspired the film!
We've added the Time magazine photo of Russell here. Meanwhile you can read the interview, and the main article on the film, at the Time magazine site here. (Thanks to Diana and "A")
The wait is almost over! The official site of Russell's band, 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts, will have clips from the band's videos next week, along with the MP3 version of the single. The band's new CD should be available in the next few weeks.
The Los Angeles premiere of The Insider will be held Thursday, Oct. 28, at the Samuel Goldwyn Theatre in Beverly Hills, Ca. Scheduled to attend: all the principal stars of the film, including Russell; real-life figures Jeffrey Wigand and Lowell Bergman; Russell-related stars including Hank Azaria (Mystery, Alaska); and other celebrities including Ashley Judd, Oliver Stone, Madeleine Stowe, Wayne Gretzky, Julianna Marguiles, Freddie Prinze Jr. and Wesley Snipes.
10/25/99: A lot of big news today!
The November 1, 1999 issue of Time magazine has a four-page article, with photos, on The Insider, including a feature on Russell. (We'll have more from this ASAP!) (thanks to Diana)
TV guide reports that Russell is set to appear on Rosie O'Donnell's Monday November 1st show. Remember dates subject to change - we'll keep you posted!(thanks to Neicie)
Purchase The Insider soundtrack HERE.
Upcomingmovies.com reports a May 5, 2000 release date for Gladiator.
Entertainment Weekly thinks The Insider premiere on Oct 28th (LA's Motion Picture Academy) will be "smoke-free". (Yeah right . . . Russell will be there!)
The November issue of Premiere (US) has a glowing review of The Insider. (Click here and then scroll to see photo).
". . . the movie wouldn't live without Russell Crowe's astonishing performance as Wigand. Eschewing all tough-guy mannerisms, draining the color (and animation) out of his face, looking rather like a ghost the very first time we see him, Crowe delivers one of the richest characterizations any recent movie has had to offer. His Wigand is the X factor that makes The Insider genuinely riveting; even though you may know how the story turns out, Crowe never lets on what his character's going to do next." (Thanks to Diane, Venita and Toni)
Thanks to Jules for some more info on the South Sydney Rabbitohs "Reclaim the Game Fund." (see item dated 10/18 below for more info) Cheques sent to the Fund can also be drawn on American banks.
Reclaim the Game Foundation
265 Chalmers Street
The Account No. is: 10204466
The Branch No.: 2198
Visit here for a preview of the Insider soundtrack! (You must have either QuickTime or RealPlayer to download the music samples.)
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Russell is now set to star with Meg Ryan in "Proof of Life," playing a hostage negotiator who falls in love with the wife of the man he is hired to save. Shooting is scheduled to begin in March. (See older items below for more details)
Get those VCR's going - this just in: There is a quick interview with Russell on Access Hollywood on his reaction to L.A.'s earthquake this weekend. Also, Christopher Plummer (on his role in The Insider)is on Entertainment Tonight. For those of you on the East Coast that may have already missed it, check your local listings, because shows may repeat in the early AM (Thanks Lex)
Today, the South Sydney Rabbitohs are launching a public fund drive to support the club's legal battle to stay in the National Rugby League. (Shown here is Russell with Mystery, Alaska co-star Burt Reynolds last year during happier times for Russell's beloved Souths.) Last Friday, the NRL announced it was excluding the Rabbitohs from competition next year after 92 years because the club did not meet its criteria. The league's decision was based on several factors, including home crowds, away crowds, competition points, gate receipts, sponsorship and other income, and profitability. It offered the Rabbitohs a chance to seek a joint venture with another club, but Souths quickly rejected that option. Instead, the Rabbitohs Board of Directors announced plans to take the NRL to court on the matter. Rabbitohs President George Piggins, who has accused the NRL of altering the criteria to keep Souths out of next year's competition, revealed plans for the drive yesterday. He is quoted in today's Sydney Morning Herald as saying: "We're going to open an account with the Commonwealth Bank and tomorrow we will make the account number public. People will be able to go to their local branch, quote the number and be able to make a contribution." Piggins goes on to say, "I don't think there's anyone in Australia who doesn't think we're right. This is big business trying to take over a sport it doesn't understand." There's no word yet on whether people outside Australia can contribute to the Rabbitohs fund, but we'll keep you posted. Meanwhile, the Herald also reports today that the NRL said the Rabbitohs could be reinstated if another club went under in the next five years or if they applied for entry in 2005. (Thanks to Neicie for keeping us on our toes, and to Wade for the photo!) Click on photo to see it larger.
This is gossip that just won't go away!!!The following comes from Rough Cut columnist David Poland regarding The X-Men:
GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY: I had a chance to ask Russell Crowe directly about Wolverine this Sunday as I was talking to him about the upcoming Michael Mann film, The Insider. Yes, he did meet with Bryan Singer, who shares a talent agency with Crowe. No, he never seriously considered it. One, he was never a fan of the comic book. He still doesn't seem to even know who or what Wolverine is. Second, he does respect Bryan Singer and would love to work with him, but as he said, "Gladiator is kind of my Wolverine." (Thanks Lulu)
"Tobacco Wars," a new three-hour series on the history of the tobacco industry, premieres this Thursday and Friday on The Learning Channel. Jeffrey Wigand, whom Russell plays in The Insider, is among the former industry players who are interviewed in the special, which is a chronological history of the industry from the advent of the cigarette to the current state of Big Tobacco. Wigand was on Entertainment Tonight on Friday discussing his life and to help promote his involvement with the special. Tobacco Wars will air this Thursday and Friday starting at 9 p.m. Eastern time, although you should check your local listings in case times and dates are changed.
And for those of you still hoping to catch the interview with Russell on Starz's Hollywood One on One, apparently all is not lost. One visitor reports she spotted the episode with Russell late last week. In fact, for those of you who can -- or know someone who will -- it might be wise to just tape the show in the coming weeks, since Russell may also appear to promote his next movie, the Insider, opening November 5.
Be sure to check out The Insider's official site for great new features, including Quicktime interviews with Russell! (Warning: You must have the Flash Plug-In to access the special features and Quicktime to view the interviews.)
The November issue of Mirabella will carry a two-page article on The Insider by Karen Durbin, praising the film and citing Russell's peformance as the cornerstone of the movie. Excerpt:
"The moments after a horrified Bergman tells Wigand he is out of the show are the most suspenseful in this frequently heart-stopping movie. This is due in no small part to Russell Crowe's extraordinary performance. With silver hair and enough extra weigh to thicken his face and body he's uncannily convincing playing a man almost twenty years his senior. But that's the least of it, Crowe makes the middle-aged scientist a complex, even dubious figure, brooding and almost emotionally fragile, ashamed at having taken the tobacco industry's shilling in the first place but fearful and uneasy in the role of a crusader." (thanks to Lulu)
The current issue of Movieline has a very favorable review of The Insider in its 'Unexpected Pleasures' column. Russell is praised for his performance:
"'The Insider' honors the unpredictability of individuals, and that's what distinguishes good drama from message-mongering. Russell Crowe scores a triumph in his portrayal of Jeffrey Wigand. In his previous roles in 'L.A. Confidential' and the Australian 'Romper Stomper', Crowe has played tough guys, so he wasn't the most obvious choice to play a scientific loner. But he is an actor who seethes with anger and intensity, and this air of menace adds a fascinating element of ambiguity to Wigand. Whistle-blowers aren't simple heroes; they're often complicated and unstable, and Crowe makes us see that Wigand is motivated by irrational rage as well as moral conviction."
Russell is also on the magazine's "Hollywood 100 Most" list. He's at No. 5, named "Most Brilliant Chameleon." (Thanks to Venita) (See the photo in the news item below.)
The November issue of Movieline magazine has a new photo of Russell. See it HERE!
The following news (gossip??) item has surfaced on the Net. Before you read it, we have to make clear that we didn't write it! The glaring inaccuracies are NOT ours (like we wouldn't know how old the guy is????). So please don't write in to tell us everything that's wrong with it! (Unless of course you're either Steven Spielberg looking to cast the Gladiator sequel, Russell's agent wanting to clear up those salary numbers, or someone from the set willing to tell us all about that late-night partying). And remember: Most rumors are based on truth. We're sure there's some in here. (But don't quote us on that.)
RUSSELL'S MAN NOW THE INSIDER
The new Russell Crowe Hollywood movie - Man of the Moment has a title change: the saga of the tobacco industry whistle-blower is now called The Insider ... and it opens soon across Australia.
The Insider sees Crowe starring as the man who provided the most telling evidence in the court battle that will eventually cost Stateside cigarette manufacturers billions of dollars in compensatory payouts and financing of medical care for people affected by smoking habits.
Al Pacino plays the 60 Minutes producer who chronicles the whistle-blower's amazing true-life journey. And, despite his top performance in L.A. Confidential and solid reviews for his just-released Mystery, Alaska ice-hockey flick, the Aussie-based Kiwi star has been the centre of months of gossip about his late-night partying and difficult behaviour while shooting the big-budgeted actioner Gladiator.
Premiere Magazine now reports that the "silly season" of reporting on Crowe's social and private life is over because of growing industry praise for a stellar performance in the now-being-edited Spartacus-like Gladiator.
It's also common knowledge in tinsel town that DreamWorks wizard Steven Spielberg is feverishly hunting for a script to feature Crowe and his well-proven athletic abilities, having already declared Crowe a bonafide top star in Gladiator, which is one of Spielberg's big hopes for a DreamWorks box-office bonanza.
And an obviously bulked-up, happy Crowe, 32, was a relaxed, easy-going guest on David Letterman's Late Show in New York last week, happily showing off photographs of his far-northern New South Wales bush property.
Crowe's burgeoning international career sees up to seven and eight scripts with firm offers hitting his Hollywood agent's desk each month, and tinsel town insiders predict his latest three films will push his asking price beyond $US3 million a picture.
It is believed Crowe is now earning up to $US 1.5 million a picture, a big jump from his $US 450,000 for L. A. Confidential two years ago.
More bad news for Mystery, Alaska. The film fell out of the top 10 movies in box office figures over the weekend. Go see it again!
Meanwhile, in case you missed them, be sure to check out our new photo pages added to Mystery, Alaska and The Insider, as well as our new Featured Photo! And we have also added a Mystery, Alaska: Fan Review Page.
Seems our gossip item from 9/16 is starting to sound like real news -- and good news for Russell. In addition to the Variety item we told you about, The Hollywood Reporter and other news agencies are now also reporting that Russell is in talks to star with Meg Ryan in Proof of Life, to be directed by Taylor Hackford (who did The Devil's Advocate, starring Russell's Insider co-star Al Pacino). Harrison Ford was reportedly also interested in the role, but new reports give no mention if him, only Russell. Meg Ryan will receive $15 million to star in the film, about a hostage negotiator who falls in love with the wife of the man he is hired to save. It was inspired by a Vanity Fair article, "Adventures in the Ransom Trade." Shooting is expected to begin in March. We'll keep you posted! (thanks to Toni)
The LA Times ("With Their Eyes On the Prize, Studios Alter Oscar Strategies" 10/7/99) reports that the studios are already gearing up their Oscar campaigns and that this season "looks to be harder fought than ever". "Sources say that Disney, with films such as Michael Mann's "The Insider" . . . may hire outside consultants in the coming weeks."
Disney reportedly has turned down requests by 60 Minutes producer Don Hewitt, Mike Wallace and other CBS employees to see The Insider before it opens Nov. 5. According to the New York Post, director Michael Mann was worried that Hewitt and Wallace would start trying to discredit his film. Wallace has already been very vocal about his problems with how he is portrayed in the movie. E News reports that only one person at 60 Minutes has seen the film, and only because a producer from another network got him into the screening.
PBS next week will air a special on the story behind The Insider. Check local listings for dates and times. (Thanks Anne!) For more info on the film, check out our The Insider page.
Click on photo for some images from Russell's recent TV appearances. (Special thanks to Susan!)
Hollywood One on One, the weekly show on the Starz! cable channel, has an interview with Russell this week. In it he talks about Mystery, Alaska, learning to skate, and his rising star in Hollywood. The episode with Russell airs throughout this week. To find out when it's on in your area, check out the official Starz! website.
This just in from Malta: CNN has filmed a documentary about the Malta Film Facilities, which will probably include shots about Gladiator. (We can't confirm at this time). Watch your local listings for dates and times as it could start airing as early as Friday. (Thanks Marina)
More added to the official Insider site! The site is still a work in progress, but it's been updated with new photos, graphics and what promises to be cool information on such topics as Russell's thoughts on becoming Jeffrey Wigand, what Wigand thought about being played by Russell, and more. There's also an "Insider information list" that you can sign up for. You'll need the Flash 4 Plug-In to view all the updates at the moment. You can find the official site here.
Better get out to see Mystery, Alaska while you can! The box office numbers are in, and they aren't good. The film came in 9th over the weekend, earning an estimated $3.1 million. A spokesman for Hollywood Pictures declined to comment on the film. In comparison, American Beauty, starring Kevin Spacey (L.A. Confidential), came in third in its first weekend in wide release.
The soundtrack to The Insider will be in stores October 26. It mostly contains tracks written and performed for the film by Australian musical artists Lisa Gerrard and Pieter Bourke. It will also feature Graeme Revell, Gustavo Santaolalla, Jan Garbarek and Massive Attack. Lisa Gerrard also was featured on the soundtrack for Insider director Michael Mann's 1995 film Heat. If you're not familiar with Lisa Gerrard, check out her site here. The Insider, the movie, will be in theaters November 5.
Just a reminder!! Mystery, Alaska opens TODAY across the U.S. and Canada! (We will be adding articles, photos and reviews to our Mystery, Alaska and Mystery, Alaska: In Print pages as fast as we can, so check back often today and the rest of the weekend.
For all his fans who didn't watch -- or couldn't -- you can read the complete transcript of Russell's appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman. It's ONLY on our Live Interviews page here. Read more about Russell (be sure to read the Wahoo Gazette!) and the rest of last night's show on the Late Show's official site here.
RUSSELL IS ON THE LETTERMAN SHOW TODAY! Don't forget to set your VCRs! And when you're done watching the show, stop by our new Chat Room to discuss with other fans! (Chat room courtesy of "Andie" and "mace")
Today's TNT Rough Cut features a review of The Insider by David Poland. He raves about the film and of special note says: "Pacino is great, as always. Christopher Plummer is a delight as Mike Wallace, a man we all know so well. But the top performance of the film is Russell Crowe's. Strong and weak. Brazen and cowardly. Anal and reckless. Crowe takes his version of Wigand into every corner of human emotion".
The New York Post reports that Richard O'Brien, who wrote the original The Rocky Horror Picture Show, is writing a sequel set nine months after the original. O'Brien plans to finish the script by March and has already written six new songs for it. Russell played Dr. Frank N. Furter (in heels!) and other roles in New Zealand and Australian productions of the original stage play. Want to read more about Russell's early career? Visit our Biography page here!
MORE SCREENINGS!! Enter to win tickets to advance screenings of Mystery, Alaska (US / Charlotte (Sept.28th), Raleigh (Sept. 30th) and Atlanta (Sept. 29th).) HERE! (Thanks to Lulu)
Be sure to watch your local newspapers and listen to the radio, as there seem to be contests to win tickets to screenings all over the US and Canada. San Francisco will have it's third (!!!) screening (Sept. 30th), see the SF Guardian for how to win tickets. (Thanks to mad maxine)
Boxoffice.com has a great new interview with Russell! Click here.
The official site of Russell's band, 30 Odd Foot of Grunts, has brand-new photos of the guys while on holiday! See them here. There is also a fun new article about missing Gladiator dummies on their article page!
Fox Television is working on a pilot based on L.A. Confidential. The project was being developed at HBO, but the cable channel eventually passed on it. According to Variety, the TV series will take place eight years before the movie and will focus on the personal lives of the officers.
In case you haven't seen it yet, the official Mystery, Alaska site has been updated with the new poster we told you about a few weeks ago. You can find it here. (See our very own Mystery, Alaska page for much more!)
The Insider trailer has now hit the US television airwaves! (For those of you who missed our older news item, you can see the trailer here.
!!!! NEWS FLASH !!!! Mystery, Alaska cast to play in celebrity-alumni hockey game TONIGHT at 6 p.m. PST at the Great Western Forum!!! L.A.-area folks can get tickets at the Forum box office or TicketMaster.
The Calendar section of Sunday's Los Angeles Times had a brief article on The Insider, titled "Can 'The Insider' End Disney's Long Oscar Dry Spell?" The biggest revelation: After early screenings of the film created Oscar buzz for both Russell and co-star Al Pacino, Disney "is still debating which actor to push for best actor versus the best supporting category." You can find the complete article on our Insider: In Print page. (Thanks Annie)
Full page ad for Mystery, Alaska in the Sunday New York Times! (It features a photo similar to the poster mentioned below) See a detail of the ad, just added to our Mystery, Alaska page.
A brand-new, completely different Mystery, Alaska poster is now showing up in theater lobbies. The new poster depicts a scene from the film in which Biebe (Russell's character) and the other guys on the Mystery hockey team watch an unclothed teammate fall and then slide across an ice pond. (The shot can also be seen in the trailer.) Underneath Biebe and the team: "The best of the best. A million miles from the rest." Russell still has top billing. We'll try to get a copy of the poster up on this site soon! In the meantime, you can find the original poster on the official site here. And in case you haven't seen the trailer yet, we've got various links to it on our Mystery, Alaska page here.
The official site for the Insider (which is up but still under construction) promises "the full Insider experience" later this month. For the most complete information on the film, be sure check out our Insider pages.
Here is another site to view The Insider trailer. (Should work faster than the one we gave you yesterday.)
USA Today features a new article on the Insider, read it here. They also mention Russell in their Oscar buzz article here.(News paper should still be available on newstands). (Thanks Lex)
The Insider's official site is now up! Though you won't find much that we don't already have on our own Insider page, the official site does include a pretty good summary of the film. You can find it here.
More personal Gladiator photos have appeared on the Net. Although Russell isn't in them as far as we could tell, they are still pretty impressive. The site is still under construction and so far doesn't have a name. You can find them here.
Maximum Russell Crowe is now officially one year old (time flies when you're having fun!). So far, we've had almost 60,000 visits from over 90 countries!! We'd like to take this opportunity to say thanks to each and every one of you for your support, your contributions, and your kind words. And a special thanks to the man himself, Russell Crowe, for being our inspiration, and a talent worthy of all our admiration.
30 Odd Foot Of Grunts news! While Russell was in Malta filming, he teamed up with Paul Zammit Cutajar from Farmhouse Studios. Together they added "a string section and funky pop element" to a couple of tracks "giving them depth and beauty, yet keeping the raw and unique TOFOG sound we have all come to love". The results of their collaboration can be found on the new Double A side single of "The Legend of Barry Kable" and "Inside Her Eyes", which will be available to Internet fans at the end of September. Watch the Grunts official site for details. (And of course, we will keep you posted!)
Read our second Mystery, Alaska fan review here. (Anyone else catch the screenings? Let us know what you thought!)
Also, we've added the latest Gladiator article from Empire magazine. You can find the article here. (the accompanying photo of Russell was added to our main Gladiator page Friday).
CLARIFICATION: We have received several e-mails from visitors who were confused by our previous "Mystery, Alaska" item. The film is still rated R as far as we know. (Of course, all of this is subject to change before the official Oct. 1 release date). Mad Maxine's comment referred specifically to the love scene involving Russell's character (as written in the script).
Also in the September issue of Empire in their "FILMÊTHIS" Book section: (Please note, this is just something Empire would LIKEÊto see filmed, not anything that is at all in the works!) It seems they agree with the results of our last week's poll!!
The Book: Eucalyptus, by Murray Bail
The Plot: Australian Farmer Holland offers the hand of daughter Ellen in marriage to the man who can correctly name all the species of Eucalyptus on his land. Many come, but only a mysterious stranger with tales of distant places, captures her heart.
Film Qualities: Part Fairy tale, part sensuous love story, it blends sweeping cinematography with an intimate exploration of isolation and nascent desire that bind two very different people. Who should star: Cate Blanchett (Ellen), Sam Neil (Holland), Russell Crowe (Stranger) Who should direct: Gillian Armstrong Tagline:ÊThe oldest of fables, the most modern of love stories. (by Trevor Lewis)
Any producers out there?? It would seem to be a perfect follow-up to Gladiator, which in the same issue is described as possibly "a veritable vomitorium of gloriously visceral fight scenes."
As "Mystery, Alaska" preview screenings are held across the U.S., reviews are beginning to make their way to us. Frequent film reviewer Mad Maxine says she hates to be the bearer of bad news but wants to let everyone know that "The editors must be a bunch of heterosexual males! They got a bit too carried away -- ALL of the nude locker room / shower scenes have been cut out" of the version she saw. And the love scene with our favorite hockey player "was hacked to PG!"
The current issue of Entertainment Weekly (Fall Movie Preview) gives The Insider a score of 8 (out of 10) on their "buzz-o-meter". Read the article here .
NEW! Test your Russell knowlege with our weekly trivia questions! Updated each Wednesday on the home page.
Good news / bad news: Mr Showbiz's Jeffrey Wells places The Insider on his "The best to come list" calling it "Smart, punchy, prestigious . . . oscar nods locked". (Like we needed him to tell us that!) Mystery, Alaska makes his "Say What?" section. Read the entire list here.
For all of our friends over in the UK: Go to your nearest news stand! The September issue of Empire Magazine (Austin Powers is the cover boy) has an article with photos on our favorite Gladiator film.
Those of you not in the UK, don't get too upset - here is something else! We are still trying to decide which page to put it on, but we knew you wouldn't want to wait to see this VERY recent photo of Russell taken last Thursday at "The Footy Show" in Sydney! And when you are finished looking at that, we have added a few photos to the Scrapbook.
8/5/99: r New Grunts pics! The official site of Russell's band has brand-new photos from various tour dates, as well as a few candid shots of Russell. You can find them here.
8/4/99: r Bad sign for Gladiator ? We've added a new article on producers' efforts to work around the death of co-star Oliver Reed before filming was completed. They've decided to superimpose the actor's image on scenes he had not yet shot, a process that has put the film behind schedule. The article implies the film could be delayed past its expected Summer 2000 release date. You can read the article here.
To soften the blow of the Rabbitohs' crushing defeat to St George-Illawarra this weekend (38-10), we thought we'd share yet another photo of Russell (with Tom Cruise) from the Rabbitohs' match last week. In case you haven't seen them already, you can find more pics on our Rabbitohs page.
In our never-ending efforts to keep all our loyal visitors entertained, we've added a weekly poll to the home page. Be sure to vote! And coming soon: RUSSELL: FACT OF THE WEEK and our TRIVIA GAME!!!
7/30/99: r In the Friday, July 30, edition of the New York Times, director Michael Mann responds to the growing controversy surrounding The Insider. The weekly "At the Movies" column also features an interesting interview with James Cromwell (L.A. Confidential). You can read the Michael Mann article here.
7/28/99: r The official 30 Odd Foot of Grunts site is now on a U.S. server, which should make downloading their sound files faster. For quickest downloads, use www.gruntland.com
In related Grunts news, be sure to catch Kevin Durand (who does the rap on the Grunts song "Nowhere,") in the Austin Powers sequel now making its way across the globe. He plays a nightclub assassin. Kevin will also be in Mystery, Alaska. (Thanks Bruno)
7/27/99: r Thought we'd promote ourselves a bit today! With some help from us, you can now see the complete 30 Odd Foot of Grunts lyrics at their official site here.
7/24/99: r USA Today's July 23-25 edition has two interesting articles on Gladiator. The first one has interviews with its director and stars, including Russell explaining why he did the film. The second one talks about Oliver Reed's performance and how filmmakers handled his death before the film was completed. You can find both articles on our Gladiator page. The newspaper is still available to buy through this weekend.
And if that's not enough Gladiator for you, we have all-new photos on our new Gladiator photos page! You can find them here.
Finally, all of us anxiously awaiting the release of The Insider (aka Man of The People) can breath a sigh of relief, now that the release date of co-star Al Pacino's OTHER big fall release, Any Given Sunday, has been pushed back a month. The two films were originally set to open one week apart, but just as we suspected, one of them blinked. Any Given Sunday's new release date is Dec. 24. The Insider is still set for release Nov. 5.
7/21/99: r Be sure to check out the new Australian version of the Mystery, Alaska trailer. (For those of you who have already downloaded the U.S. one, this new version only varies slightly.) Find both trailers and much more on our Mystery, Alaska page.
7/19/99: r In the August issue of Premiere (US), there is a brief mention of Russell in the gossip section. Thanks to Venita for sending this item in:
"...And speaking of getting silly: Despite reports of late-night partying and difficult behavior, sources close to DreamWorks' big-budget 'Gladiator reluctantly admit that Russell Crowe is delivering a stellar performance."
Also, several people wrote in to report they spotted a segment on The Insider last week on the TV show Entertainment Tonight. Apparently it was in response to the NY Times article that ran last week. There were scenes from the trailer, which are starting to hit theaters. (Thanks to Lex) You can read both of the latest NY Times articles HERE.
7/10/99: r Visit our Gladiator page and see details about the latest script review!
Just a reminder to hurry and VOTE for the 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts official site as the Best Australian Artist Internet Site. Voting ends July 15. (Reminder: that would be the 14th on the other side of the international date line from Australia.) We got them nominated, now we need your HELP to make them WIN!
7/8/99: r More from Russell's uncle Dave! This time, Dave writes about dining with the cast and crew of Gladiator during his visit to the set in Malta. You can find it on our It's All Relative page. Also, be sure to check out this month's issue of Cricketer International magazine! In it you can find Dave's full account of the Crowe clan's cricket match in Malta during Gladiator filming. For excerpts, visit our It's All Relative page.
Dark Horizons has posted all-new photos from Gladiator, taken from the latest issue of French Premiere magazine. You can find them here.
7/5/99: r More photos of Russell at the Souths-Penrith game here. (see below for details!)
Russell was in Sydney this weekend cheering on his favorite team, the South Sydney Rabbitohs! Russell sat on the sideline next to coach Craig Coleman (seen here). The Rabbitohs went on to beat Penrith, 20-0. Check out the Sydney Morning Herald for the full story. (Thanks Wade. Photo: Sydney Morning Herald)
Russell and Gladiator are mentioned in USA Today this weekend, in an interview with Djimon Hounsou. In it, Djimon talks about, among other things, fighting racism in Hollywood, the testosterone on the Gladiator set, and whether he could stand being chained to Russell during fight scenes. You can find it on our Gladiator articles page here.
An extra on The Insider (aka Man of the People) writes about the cast read-through and lunch with Russell and others in the cast! Find it on our Man of the People page here.
The official 30 Odd Foot of Grunts site has added more music. You can download full versions in MP3 format or samples as Wave files. They include tracks from their first two EPs, The Photograph Kills and What's Her Name, and their latest release, Gaslight. You can find them here.
Today's Variety refers to Man of the People by that OTHER name, so I guess we should all start getting used to it.
Someone working on Man of the People (we just can't bring ourselves to call it The Insider yet!) has leaked a few tidbits to The Entertainian. Apparently Michael Mann and Co. have been working on the project nonstop ("7 days a week") for months. The insider reports that a press screening was held earlier this week in New York. Apparently the film has a lot of scenes with people talking to each other on cell phones. Overall, the impression was the film so far is too long and still needs editing. That shouldn't surprise anyone, since the initial screenplay was 147 pages long (which would equal about 2 and a half hours on screen). Visit our Man of The People page. Thanks to Dark Horizons.
Garth Adam takes center stage to discuss the band's music, and more! Read our exclusive Q-and-A here.
TV alert! CNN Showbiz Today "On the Road to Australia" will be presented from Australia for the entire week of June 21 - 25. We haven't confirmed that Russell will be on for sure, but we think the best shot at seeing him will be Tuesday. Check your local listings for broadcast times.
"Tuesday, June 22nd Anchored from the Sydney Opera House Aussie Actors: Mel Gibson, Cate Blanchett, Nicole Kidman, Geoffrey Rush, Rachel Griffiths... some of Hollywood's biggest names call Australia home. We check out the Land Down Under's contribution to Hollywood's acting ranks. " CNN Showbiz Today)
John Polson (Sum Of Us) will be featured on Wednesday and we are sure to see other Russell related actors during the week.
The July/August issue of Brill's Content (US) has an article on Man of the People, including an analysis of the film and it's stars. There are no new photos in the magazine; they're the same ones you can find on our own Man of The People page.
There is also a very small picture of Russell in the July issue of Cosmopolitan magazine (US) in the section "Inside Hollywood / Midsummer Night's Dreaming: Our secret wishes for sexy stars." The caption: "Our rock-a-bye babe, Russell Crowe." You can find a larger version here.
After months of speculation, the wait is over: Dark Horizons reports that Dougray Scott has now officially signed on to play Wolverine in the X-Men movie. Fox President Tim Rothman said director Bryan Singer, who had wanted Russell for the part before our man reportedly turned it down, "was incredibly demanding over who could play the character, and we needed to find somebody who was dynamic. Dougray has the charisma, the physicality, and the intensity."
Check out the latest from Dave Crowe! He offers an insider's account of the Crowe family cricket match in Malta!
The official Mystery, Alaska page now has photos. We've had the same ones on our own Mystery, Alaska page for months, but you can see larger versions there.
Gladiator has completed principal photography!
NEWS FLASH! This just in: A title for "The Untitled Michael Mann Tobacco Project," (Did they see our news item below and figure they better finally name it??) - the film will be called"The Insider" (Thanks to Brian / moviesalvage.com!)
The unofficially titled Man of The People, which is still officially called "The Untitled Michael Mann Tobacco Project," has been rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America. A word to the good folks at Touchstone: Name this film QUICK! In fact, just stick with Man of the People since it's known by that now anyway. (Thanks Bob!)
In other news, it's been announced that Man of the People co-star Al Pacino's other fall movie, Any Given Sunday, will be released November 12. That's only one week after Man of the People's November 5 debut. Given the Oscar talk surrounding both movies, as well as Pacino's major presence in both, it seems more than likely one of the films will get bumped. Your guess is as good as ours as to which one it'll be. We'll keep you posted.
Run to your nearest video store! Virtuosity DVD available today. (or you can order on-line at: Shopping for Russell (Video also available). If you buy only one DVD, this is the one to have. (See the purple suit as it was meant to be seen!)
A lot of news again today!
Aint-it-cool-news has posted an early review of Man of the People. The reviewer attended a test screening and calls the film a "masterpiece"! (Warning: There are several plot spoilers.) To read his review, click here. but be sure to read ALL our new news first!!
The official 30 Odd Foot of Grunts site now has music clips available for download. You can find it here.
The History Channel will present "The Roman War Machine," a four-part series on the rise and fall of the first professional army. It will air May 17-20. Russell plays a Roman general stripped of his command and forced to fight for his life in Gladiator.
A lot of news today!
FINALLY!!! A release date for Man of the People! Watch for it November 5th (in the US.)
An extra on the Gladiator set in Malta gives his report on a recent cricket match involving Russell and members of his family. You can find it on our Gladiator page here (Thanks to Marina and Clive!)
Voting has now begun for the "Australian Online Music Awards." Be sure to visit the site and vote for Russell's band, 30 Odd Foot of Grunts. Voting continues through July 15 at 5 pm EST. The awards ceremony will be Aug. 7.
Be sure to check out Russell as Jeffrey Wigand in the "Hollywood Ink" section of the June issue of Movieline magazine (with Brendan Fraser on the cover). See a larger version of the photo on our Man of the People page (thanks Maggie and Venita!)
Be sure to nominate the official 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts site (gruntland.com) as the "Best Australian Artist Internet Site" at the "Australian Online Music Awards". Vote now, nominations close May 15th (Just a reminder for those of you across the international date line, that would be the 14th.) Be sure to read all the latest articles about the Grunts on our Grunts in Print page.
Some new photos from the Gladiator set (England) posted on Moviesalvage news. No photos of Russell, but certainly worth a look! (thanks Brian)
5/5/99: r Russell is featured in the May 3-9 Weekly Variety sounding off against the Australian government's treatment of the arts. Following funding cuts, stricter censorship and official inquiries into industry practices, the conservative government ran television ads criticizing plans for increased funding for the "elite arts." Variety quotes Russell, along with several other Australian artists and politicians, as harshly criticizing the ads. Russell says the ads were "a political, hairsplitting lie" by an administration "wreaking havoc on long-established successful programs . . . hacking and slashing at the grassroots of the film industry."
The Malta Times quoted sources close to the directors of Gladiator as saying that the filming of Oliver Reed's parts of the film had been ``pretty much completed'' and they are expected to be retained in the film.
Read more about (Gladiator) Oliver Reed's death here. (Updates added as they come in.)
Sad news from Malta. Gladiator co-star Oliver Reed has died. Be sure to check back for updates on this breaking story.
4/28/99: r For those who missed the March issue of GQ, you can find the interview here.
4/20/99: Man of The People news: read the latest article from l"Mr.Showbiz.
4/17/99: Russell has reportedly turned down the role of Wolverine in the upcoming X-Men movie because he felt it was too close to his L.A. Confidential character, Bud White. (Big surprise!). Thanks to DreamWatch magazine and Dark Horizons. (See Russell's comments on this film from the September live online chat at ninemsn here.
4/14/99: You read it here first, now buy the shirts! The 30 Odd Foot of Grunts merchandise we told you about back in January is now available to order on their official site. Along with two different shirts to choose from, there is the official Grunts baseball cap. And you can pick up their latest CD, Gaslight, there as well.
Sad news from Malta. Gladiator co-star Oliver Reed has died. The following report is from the Associated Press. Be sure to check back for updates on this breaking story.
Actor Oliver Reed Dies
LONDON (AP) -- Oliver Reed, the feisty, hard-drinking British actor who was as well known for his antics off-screen as he was for his performances on-screen, died Sunday in Malta. He was 61.
Reed, who was on the Mediterranean island filming a movie called ``The Gladiator,'' died on the way to the hospital about 15 minutes after taking ill in a bar in Valetta, Malta police said. An autopsy will be performed Monday, but Reed's death is not considered suspicious, police said.
Among Reed's 53 films were ``Women in Love,'' ``The Devils,'' and ``Tommy,'' all directed by the eccentric Englishman Ken Russell.
Born Feb. 13, 1938 in Wimbledon, south London, Reed was known as a rascal whose drinking bouts were well publicized. ``I'm not a villain, I've never hurt anyone,'' he said. ``I'm just a tawdry character who explodes now and again.''
Glenda Jackson, an Oscar-winning actress-turned-politician who also starred in ``Women in Love,'' told SKY News television station that Reed was ``immaculately professional.'' ``Once he was in front of the camera, he was all work,'' she said. ``I am very sorry he has gone, but I think he probably went the way he would have wished.''
Reed is survived by his wife, Josephine, and a daughter, Sarah. Funeral arrangements were not immediately known.
(© copyright 1999 The Associated Press)
4/8/99: r Virtuosity to be released on DVD May 25th! Unfortunately it looks like the only extra on it will be the trailer, but the good news is you can pre-order and get a big discount! This is one to see on DVD!! Pre-order at reel.com (Video also available). See a portion of the trailer!
4/17/99: r Russell has reportedly turned down the role of Wolverine in the upcoming X-Men movie because he felt it was too close to his L.A. Confidential character, Bud White. (Big surprise!). Thanks to DreamWatch magazine and Dark Horizons. (See Russell's comments on this film from the September live online chat at ninemsn here.
You read it here first, now buy the shirts! The 30 Odd Foot of Grunts merchandise we told you about back in January is now available to order on their official site. Along with two different shirts to choose from, there is the official Grunts baseball cap. And you can pick up their latest CD, Gaslight, there as well.
More on the Virtuosity DVD - unfortunately it looks like the only extra on it will be the trailer, but the good news is you can pre-order and get a big discount! This is one to see on DVD!! Pre-order at reel.com (Video also available). See a portion of the trailer!
Virtuosity to be released on DVD May 25th!
April 7: HAPPY 35th BIRTHDAY TO RUSSELL, from Maximum Crowe and all of your fans worldwide!!!
Check out our NEW page on Russell's band 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts (New photos!)
Order "Gaslight" (their latest compact disc)
HERE (Mention you saw the news at Maximum Crowe!) They are no longer taking mail orders at the Los Angeles address but you can use a credit card to order easily from their official site.
Mystery, Alaska news! The official site is slowly taking form. It now has a brief synopsis of the film. Click here.
More casting news from Gladiator: Derek Jacobi, Richard Harris, Spencer Treat Clark and David Hemmings.
Message from us! As our six-month anniversary approaches, we realize we've outgrown the "trivia" in our name. We wanted to let everyone know that The Russell Crowe Trivia Page will soon become Maximum Russell Crowe. Look for our new name and logo soon. (New name, same content!)
COVER STORY: One of our loyal readers who wishes to remain anonymous wanted to tell everyone to RUN out and buy the March issue of GQ. (US addition) We agree!!! See ALL of the photos here.
Some bad news: It appears Mystery, Alaska's release date has been pushed back until at least the fall due to a marketing restructure. We'll keep you posted. (Thanks George!) (Be sure to read our a Q-and-A with George Maniotakis / Mystery, Alaska)
Gladiator news. Read the Farnham Herald article here! (thanks Marjory!)
Mystery, Alaska (opening April 2) has warranted a spot in Entertainment Weekly's Spring Movie Preview as part of "The A list: A compendium of 20 movies you can't afford to miss." There are no photos, but the item gives a synopsis of the film (which we're sure you already read on our Mystery, Alaska page, right?), and it has comments from director Jay Roach and co-star Hank Azaria. It also confirms rumors of a cameo by Mike Myers (star of the Roach- directed "Austin Powers" movies, as well as a big hockey fan). Even the magazine's cover girl, Michelle Pfeiffer, has a Russell connection: She's married to "MA" producer/co-writer David E. Kelley.
The magazine is on newsstands now.
More 30 Odd Foot of Grunts news:
During their recent trip to L.A., the Grunts went back into the studio to work on a project they hope to release later this year. They are also hoping to do some more U.S. shows this summer. For pictures from the Viper Room show, as well as a few shots from the studio, check their official site here.
Also, rumor has it there will be Grunts shirts available for sale soon at their official site! We'll keep you posted!
More awards for L.A. Confidential! In Japan, the film has won the 53th (1998) MAINICH FILM AWARDS for Best Foreign Film and Best Publicity. The awards ceremony and reception will be held Feb. 8 at the Tokyo Prince Hotel. The film was also selected by several publications as the top film of 1998. (Thanks Mika!)
Click here for our review of the Grunts American debut!
1/10/99: r Grunts highlights! By all accounts, Russell's Viper Room performance with his band, 30 Odd Foot of Grunts, was a smashing success!
The Viper Room, which holds 250 people, was filled to capacity. Among the celebrities in the crowd were Russell's L.A. Confidential co-stars Danny DeVito and Kim Basinger, and Salma Hayek of Breaking Up.
The Grunts played a variety of songs from all three of their CDs, The Photograph Kills, What's Her Name and Gaslight. Russell mixed up the lyrics of a few songs, and even joked about it with the crowd.
He also addressed the crowd between songs. Among the highlights: He recited the harrowing true story behind "The Legend of Barry Kable," and he explained how he came to write "What You Want Me to Forget," which is about his father's search for a job when Russell was a boy. While introducing the song "High Horse Honey," Russell said it was inspired by his experiences during filming of The Quick and the Dead.
After the show the band partied with a private group inside the Viper Room.
Anyone out there attend the show? E-mail us your reviews:firstname.lastname@example.org
Urban Cinefile revisits the making of "Proof" in this weeks edition. (Visit our Proof page for more details on this award winning film.)
For those of you in the Los Angeles area in the US: The Viper Room has confirmed The Grunts will be playing Friday, Jan 8th. No advance tickets for sale, some will be available at the door.
Gladiator casting news: Joaquin Phoenix (Clay Pigeons, To Die For) and Djimon Hounsou (Amistad, Deep Rising) have joined the cast. Phoenix will play Commodus, the evil emperor of Rome. Hounsou will play the second-in-command to the Roman general played by Russell.
We want to wish the Grunts a great tour!!! (Starts tomorrow 12/11, see item below.)
Page 27 in the latest issue of Premiere Magazine (US edition 1/99) has a small mention of Russell. See our Biography page for the photo!
Grunts news: Russell's band has announced the confirmed tour dates for Australia:
Fri 11th - Waves, Wollongong
Sat 12th - The Bridge Hotel, Rozelle
Wed 16th - Vinegar Hill Woolshed, Rouse Hill
Thurs 17th - Central Coast Leagues Club
Fri 18th - The General Bourke Hotel, Parramatta
Sat 2nd - Greenhouse Tavern, Coffs Harbour
Sun 3rd - the Edge, Gold Coast
Tues 5th - Ballina RSL Club
The Los Angeles dates have not been confirmed, but we'll keep you posted! (thanks Bruno)
Russell's band 30 Odd Foot of Grunts have added new rehearsal photos at their site! Click here to see them. Also check out our new lyrics page!
More from the AFI awards: Guy Pearce accepted on behalf of L.A. Confidential, saying it was ironic that two Aussie actors had starred in the best "foreign" film. (He must not know Russell is actually a Kiwi!) (Thanks Dave!).
Toni Collette (Spotswood) won best supporting actress for "The Boys"
L.A. confidential ratings news! The film's premiere on HBO was the highest-ranking non-sport show for the week, coming in 5th place with 4.8 million viewers. The Tennessee/Tampa Bay NFL football game was first, and pro wrestling took the 2nd-4th slots. Among adults 18-49, the film came in 2nd place, with 2.8 million people. Reminder: the next showing will be on Sunday, Nov. 15 in most areas, so check your local listings.
The Australian Film Institute has chosen LA Confidential as Best Foreign Film of 1998. (Congratulations to Russell and all of the cast and crew!)
Of related note: Hugo Weaving (Proof) won Best Actor for "The Interview" and John Polson ( The Sum Of Us, Blood Oath) Best Supporting Actor for "The Boys". "The Interview" also won Best Film.
Another rumor about The X-men casting appeared in the Toronto Star.(Although we all know Russell has denied this!)
Breaking Up will be released in November, retitled Turning Love, in Japan. (Thanks Mika!)
Gaslight (the new album by Russell's band
30 Odd Foot of Grunts) is now available! To order Mention you saw the news here at the Russell Crowe Trivia page! (Scroll down for more news on the Grunts.)
Some rumors from GLADIATOR: One of the highlights of the film will be a sequence in which a gladiator fights a rhinoceros and will allegedly be impaled by it. (Let's hope its not Russell!)
For the full transcipt of Russell's live chat at Ninemsn, click here.(Or scroll down for highlights). Our version is as close to the real chat as possible. We just removed the typos and also added parts that were either missing or rearranged in the Ninemsn posted transcript.
The Quick and the Dead is available on DVD! Rated R. Running time: 105 minutes. Retail Price: $29.95. Includes both widescreen and full-screen formats, theatrical trailer. Languages: English (2-channel and 5.1 Dolby Digital), French. Subtitles: English, French. Close captioned.
NEWS FROM RUSSELL (!!!!)
The following info was taken from the live online chat at ninemsn on September 24, 1998. The chat lasted for about an hour. The site host posted questions from fans who showed up live, and quite a few from emails sent in before the chat. Russell's Grunts-mate, Dean Cochran, joined the chat about halfway through. See here. for full transcript.
Russell says he's very close to a deal with Ridley Scott to star in Gladiator. He's in the second month of preparation, and they plan to begin filming in February. "It's really up to Dreamworks at this point in time, if they can find a budget for it -- recreating Rome in 1998 is about 80 million. ... As Ridley says, 'They're in the supermarket and they're just picking which shelf things come off.' "
He's looking forward to being "a general in the Roman army."
About doing the X-Men movie: "I know Bryan Singer, the director, and he's talked to me about it, and he says I'd be perfect for a comic book character so I'm not sure how to take that...I'm unfamiliar with the history of the X-Men and he's a very talented fella and [probably] one of the best of his generation. At this point in time I haven't read a script so as far as I'm concerned I'm not involved at all."
The following info comes directly from the chat. Keep in mind there were plenty of typos (hey, he's an actor, not a typist!). We're presently trying to confirm the spellings, etc., but if anyone knows the accurate details, please email us at:twice4no
The film he wants to direct takes place in New Guinea and comes from a John Hepworth book called the Long Green Shore. It was written in 1946 and first published in 1995. "But again I don't have a deal on that... it really doesn't mean much at this point."
He said he will "probably" return to Australia at the end of next year to make another film there.
News on the Grunts and the new CD, Gaslight:
Concert dates announced! 18-23 December 1998 and 2-5 January 1999, throughout Australia, including Melbourne, Sydney, Coffs and the Gold Coast. They have two shows planned in LA "just after the first week in January." One of the shows will be at the Viper Room.
"Dean and I have been playing since 1984 so we are like an old married couple."
What does music give him that nothing else does? "I think there is a certain level of creative expression that is available in a three-minute pop song that is not available in other medium."
The band plans to film a video for "The Legend of Barry Kable," which they performed earlier that night on the Footy Show.
Apparently there are a few surprises on the new CD: "On the cover it says 11 tracks but if you look inside you'll see that that's not necessarily correct!"
Gaslight can only be ordered via the Grunts page, and you can order it via credit card starting next week. There will be two different addresses, one in the U.S. and one in Australia, so fans should be able to get it quicker.
Russell seemed very excited about the new CD, and seemed very interested in his fans' thoughts on it. He asked more than once if anyone at the chat had a copy of the CD yet. (He may not have known it wasn't available yet from the Web site).
News about the Michael Mann project (currently titled Man of the People):
On working with Al Pacino: "It was very interesting. He's an American icon and incredibly deep and sparkling talent. It was a very big moment for me." Later he said he also enjoyed working with Christopher Plummer.
Russell's thoughts on L.A. Confidential:
"Bud White is no more part of me than any other of my characters. At the same time it's me physically and my imagination driving certain parts of the role."
On kissing Kim Basinger: "I don't kiss and tell unless it's someone I really hate."
Some final thoughts:
"I'd also like to say hi to anyone who's online from Austin, Texas -- the music capital of the known world."
11/19/98: Want a free L.A. Confidential DVD? During November and December, customers who buy the new Microsoft Windows 98 operating system at participating stores will receive a free DVD. Among the titles to choose from are Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, U.S. Marshals, City of Angels and -- yes, that's right -- L.A. Confidential. The purpose of the offer is to promote DVD use on personal computers and laptops with DVD-ROM drives. Check your local stores for details.
11/5/98: AOL will present live Internet coverage of the 1998 Australian Film Institute Awards (November 7th) with live interviews of the winners and star presenters from the Awards ceremony. (See GOSSIP and RUMORS for more info.) Nominations for Best Foreign Film: The Full Monty, LA Confidential, The Ice Storm, Kundun.
The Australian Film Institute has announced its nominations for the 1998 Movie Network AFI Awards.
Behind the scenes of Mystery, Alaska! NHL Cool Shots, a weekly syndicated television show, is featuring a segment on the making of Russell's upcoming release, Mystery, Alaska. The program airs in most major U.S. cities and Canada. Check the show's web site for the day and time it airs in your area (there is no air date given for the Mystery, Alaska special). The site also has a video clip of the segment, but you must have QuickTime video player software to view it (no longer available).
One of Russell's favorite musical artists, singer-songwriter Billy Bragg, will perform on Late Night with Conan O'Brien this Wednesday, Sept. 30.
The brand new 30 Odd Foot of Grunts album GASLIGHT is coming soon!!
*SPECIAL GRAND FINAL FOOTY SHOW*: Russell Crowe, Sandra Bullock and Elle Macpherson will all join in for the Grand Final Edition of The Footy Show, to be broadcast live from Sydney's Enmore Theatre. The show, which will preview the NRL Grand Final, will also include live performances by top Australian band, The Screaming Jets. Airs Thursday the 24th of September, 9:30 pm (Channel 9, Sydney).
GOSSIP AND RUMORS
There is a rumor floating around that Russell will be at the AFI AWARDS in Sydney on Nov 7th, (L.A. Confidential is nominated for Best Foreign Film) At this time, we can not confirm that information. The confirmed presenters for the MOVIE NETWORK 1998 AFI AWARDS are: Guy Pearce (to present the Beyond Films Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role and the Hoyts Group Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role), Kylie Minogue, Sam Neill, Greta Scacchi, George Lucas, Geoffrey Rush, Cate Blanchett, Hugo Weaving, Rebecca Gibney, Paul Grabowsky, Sigrid Thornton, Alex Dimitriades, Angela Punch McGregor, Lisa McCune, Jackie Weaver, Bruce Spence, Jan Chapman, Jay Laga'aia, Matt Day, Martin Sacks, Sophie Heathcote, Nicola Charles, Aaron Jeffrey, Ernie Dingo, Pamela Rabe, Paul Mercurio, Belinda Emmett, John Waters and Aaron Pederson.
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