Russell Crowe attacks peers for selling out to advertisers

LONDON - Oscar-winning 'Gladiator' actor Russell Crowe has launched a scathing, albeit so far verbal, attack on his Hollywood peers for appearing in high-paying foreign ads.

During an interview with the US edition of GQ magazine, the 'Gladiator' actor said: "I don't use my celebrity to make a living. I don't do ads for suits in Spain like George Clooney or cigarettes in Japan like Harrison Ford.

"And on one level, people go: 'Well, more fault to you, mate, because there's free money to be handed out'."

Crowe said that to him the idea of appearing in such ads was completely contradictory as an actor.

"But to me it's kind of sacrilegious -- it's a complete contradiction of the fucking social contract you have with your audience. I mean, Robert de Niro's advertising American Express. Gee whiz, it's not the first time he's disappointed me. It's been happening for a while now," he said.

Crowe forgot to mention a host of other Hollywood A-listers starring in ads across the pond. Among them are Jennifer Aniston for Barclaycard, Nicole Kidman for Chanel, Ray Liotta and Aniston again for Heineken, Gwyneth Paltrow and Clooney again for Martini, and Catherine Zeta Jones for T-Mobile.

Other big name actors who have taken the advertising cash include Sir Sean Connery for Dewar's Scotch whisky, Sarah Jessica Park for Gap, Brad Pitt for Heineken and Samuel L Jackson and Gary Oldman for Barclays.

New Zealand-born Crowe is almost as famous for his off-screen antics as he is for his movie career.

After his acceptance speech for his Best Actor award during the British Film Awards was edited, Crowe shoved the producer of the show against a wall and yelled: "Who on Earth had the fucking audacity to take out the best actor's poem? I'll make sure you never work in Hollywood." He later issued a full apology.

He has also been involved in numerous brawls including one outside a top London restaurant that was caught on CCTV.

Crowe won an Oscar in 2001 for his role in 'The Insider' and was nominated for one as schizophrenic John Forbes Nash in 'A Beautiful Mind', although the 2000 Ridley Scott epic 'Gladiator' made him a household name. He has also won a British Academy Award.

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