Date: 29th November 2000
The early previews of the film which brought RUSSELL CROWE and MEG RYAN together suggest it isn't going to be an easy Christmas (00) for the celebrity couple.
Last night (27NOV00) invited guests at a packed Los Angeles theatre chortled at scenes in PROOF OF LIFE, which showed the couple falling in love - while THE GREEN MILE star DAVID MORSE, who plays Ryan's husband was trying to survive in a terrorist prisoner of war camp.
In one scene, Crowe, who plays a former soldier sent to rescue Morse's character, passionately kisses Ryan before undertaking a military operation to free her husband. One guest says, "It has been a tough year for Meg Ryan and Russell Crowe, what with their personal lives being posted all over the press, and I'd really like to like this film but it's terrible.
"People were laughing in all the wrong places and some people actually walked out before the movie ended. I think it will be savaged by the critics." There is good news for Crowe, however - the DVD release of GLADIATOR has smashed records for the digital format. More than 1.8 million copies of the film have been sold since it hit stores on November 21 (00). (KL/WN/CPT)