Date: 27th February 2002
Bolshy actor RUSSELL CROWE caused havoc on a British talk show - when he refused to be interviewed in front of other stars. The GLADIATOR (2000) star was due to appear on top-rated BBC show Parkinson. Guests usually sit in on each other's interviews, and host Michael Parkinson was hoping the chemistry between Crowe and fellow Antipodeans CATE BLANCHETT and KYLIE MINOGUE would make riveting TV - until Crowe refused.
A BBC exec reveals, "We were particularly looking forward to their interaction, as that is often the best bit of the show. But just hours before we started filming, Russell insisted that he would not be interviewed with anyone else. It put our schedule into chaos and we had to rearrange things for the whole show. We would have told Russell where to go if it had not been so late in the day.
But we had already advertised that it was going to be a Down Under special and it was too late to find anybody else. Parky has interviewed some of the world's biggest stars - much bigger than Russell - and no one has ever asked for the format to be changed around them before. Everyone on the show was furious, including Parky. It's the last time he will be invited to plug a show on Parkinson. "
Previous guests on the top-rated show include ELTON JOHN, JOHN LENNON, Muhammad Ali, FRED ASTAIRE and WOODY ALLEN.