Russell Crowe

Russell Crowe

Apr. 7th, 1964
Born in
Wellington, North Island, New Zealand

Russell Crowe's Main TV Roles

Show Character(s)
200 Greatest Pop Culture Icons TV Show
200 Greatest Pop Culture Icons
Brides of Christ (AU) TV Show
Brides of Christ (AU)
Discovery Atlas TV Show
Discovery Atlas
Today Tonight (AU) TV Show
Today Tonight (AU)
The Ray Martin Show (AU) TV Show
The Ray Martin Show (AU)

Main Movie Roles

Guest TV Roles

[none found]


Russell Ira Crowe (born April 7, 1964) is a New Zealand actor, film producer and musician based in Australia and the United States.

Born in Wellington, New Zealand, the son of Jocelyn Yvonne (née Wemyss) and John Alexander Crowe, both of whom were movie set caterers; his father also managed a hotel. Crowe's maternal grandfather, Stan Wemyss, was a cinematographer who was named an MBE for filming footage of World War II. Crowe's paternal grandfather, John Doubleday Crowe, was from Wrexham, Wales, while one of Crowe's maternal great-grandmothers was Māori. Crowe also has English, German, Irish, Italian, Norwegian, Scottish, and Swedish ancestry. He is a cousin of former New Zealand cricket captains Martin Crowe and Jeff Crowe.

When Crowe was four years old, his family moved to Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, where his parents pursued a career in set catering. The producer of the Australian TV series Spyforce was his mother's godfather, and Crowe (at age five or six) was hired for a line of dialogue in one episode, opposite series star Jack Thompson (in 1994 Thompson played Crowe's father in The Sum of Us). Crowe also appeared briefly in the serial The Young Doctors.

Crowe was educated at Sydney Boys High School. When he was 14, his family moved back to New Zealand where, along with his brother Terry, he attended Auckland Grammar School with cousins Martin Crowe and Jeff Crowe. He then continued his secondary education at Mount Roskill Grammar School, which he left at the age 16 to pursue his ambitions and childhood dreams of becoming an actor.

After initial success in Australia, Crowe began acting in American films. He co-starred with 'Denzel Washington' in Virtuosity as well as American Gangster and with 'Sharon Stone' in The Quick and the Dead in 1995.

Crowe came to international attention for his role as the Roman General Maximus Decimus Meridius in the 2000 historical epic film Gladiator, directed by Ridley Scott, for which Crowe won an Academy Award for Best Actor, a Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor, an Empire Award for Best Actor and a London Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor and 10 further nominations for best actor. Crowe appeared as the tobacco firm whistle blower Jeffrey Wigand in the 1999 film The Insider, for which he received five awards as best actor and seven nominations in the same category. In 2001, Crowe's portrayal of mathematician and Nobel Prize winner John F. Nash in the biopic A Beautiful Mind brought him numerous awards.

Crowe's other films include L.A. Confidential (1997), Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (2003), Cinderella Man (2005), 3:10 to Yuma (2007), American Gangster (2007), Body of Lies (2008) and Robin Hood (2010). Crowe's work has earned him several accolades during his career including a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, three Academy Award nominations in a row (1999–2001), one Golden Globe Award for Best Actor, one BAFTA, and an Academy Award.

He is also co-owner of the South Sydney Rabbitohs, an Australian National Rugby League team.

Crowe portrayed Javert in Les Misérables, an adaptation of the popular musical. He appeared in Man of Steel, where he played Jor-El, the father of Superman. He will co-star in Winter's Tale, based on the 1983 novel of the same name by Mark Helprin, and star in Noah, in which he will play the titular biblical patriarch.

Crowe began an on-again, off-again relationship with Australian singer Danielle Spencer in 1989, when they co-starred in the 1990 film The Crossing. Crowe and Spencer reconciled in 2001 and married on April 7, 2003 (Crowe's 39th birthday) at Crowe's cattle property in Nana Glen, New South Wales. They have two sons: Charles Spencer Crowe (b. December 21, 2003) and Tennyson Spencer Crowe (b. July 7, 2006). In October 2012, it was reported that Crowe and Spencer had separated.

In 2000, Crowe was romantically involved with his co-star 'Meg Ryan' while on the set of their film Proof of Life.

  • Nearly finalized a deal to reunite with director 'Michael Mann (I)' (qv) on _Collateral (2004)_ (qv), but scheduling conflicts with "Eucalyptus", a doomed film project, prevented him from taking the role, which later went to 'Tom Cruise' (qv).
  • Shares a birthday with 'Jackie Chan (I)' (qv).
  • Dropped out of high school.
  • Crowe's maternal grandfather, Stan Wemyss, was a cinematographer who, according to Crowe, produced the first film by New Zealander Geoff Murphy and was also named an MBE for filming footage of World War II. Crowe's maternal great-great-great grandmother was Māori and as a result Crowe is registered on the Maori electoral roll in New Zealand; Crowe also has Norwegian, Irish and British ancestry.
  • Lost his front tooth playing rugby when he was ten. Never got it fixed until, at the insistence of the director for _The Crossing (1990)_ (qv), who paid for it out of his own pocket.
  • Despite liking the script very much, turned down _About a Boy (2002)_ (qv).
  • Starred in 5 movies in 7 years (1997-2003) which ended up being nominated for an Oscar for Best Picture. (_L.A. Confidential (1997)_ (qv), _The Insider (1999)_ (qv), _Gladiator (2000)_ (qv), _A Beautiful Mind (2001)_ (qv) and _Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (2003)_ (qv)). _Gladiator (2000)_ (qv) and _A Beautiful Mind (2001)_ (qv) won. A similar achievement was done by 'William Hurt (I)' (qv) in the 80s, he starred in 5 movies nominated for Best Picture in only 6 years between 1983 and 1988 but none of them won.
  • Ranked #28 in Premiere's 2002 annual Power 100 List.

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