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    Russell Crowe on Playing Nazi Hermann Göring, Music and ‘Gladiator 2’ – The Hollywood Reporter

    A day after receiving much love from crowds at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival for his acting and musical chops, Russell Crowe on Saturday discussed future projects, his passion for music and addressed, yet again, Gladiator 2.

    “The next project I shoot is Nuremberg,” the Hollywood star told a press conference at the festival without sharing more details, drawing gasps when he added: “And I play Hermann Göring.” After all, Göring was one of the most powerful figures in Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Party. During the Nuremberg trials in 1946, he was sentenced to death by hanging for war crimes, crimes against humanity and other crimes. He died by suicide before the sentence was to be carried out. During a recent Irish radio interview, Crowe had also mentioned the movie, adding that it would be directed by Jamie Vanderbilt.

    Crowe on Saturday also mentioned that he has no fewer than four movies completed and ready to come out: Kraven the Hunter with Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Land of Bad with Liam Hemsworth, Sleeping Dogs with Karen Gillan and The Georgetown Project with Sam Worthington.

    The star’s weekend comments came after he introduced a screening of Peter Weir’s 2003 classic Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World.

    On Friday, the festival honored him with its Crystal Globe award for lifetime achievement during its opening night ceremony. Later that evening, Crowe and his band Indoor Garden Party had Karlovy Vary residents and visitors swinging with a packed outdoor concert, during which the star shared some music and Hollywood anecdotes.

    “I’m not some kind of political spokesperson,” he shared during the press conference when asked about the political situation and suppression of women in Iran. The star said his thoughts were very simple to summarize: “Women need to be respected. Women need to have the freedom to make their own choices.” And he added: “They are the more intelligent of the species, so they should be respected. And it’s not good for anyone to try to suppress women.”

    As expected, he also got a question about Gladiator 2, being directed, like the original film starring Crowe, by Ridley Scott and featuring Pedro Pascal, Denzel Washington, Connie Nielsen and Paul Mescal. “They should be fucking paying me for the amount of questions I get asked about the fucking film that I am not even in.” He shared, “I don’t know anything about the cast, I don’t know anything about the plot.” After all, since his character Maximus died in Gladiator, for which the actor won the Oscar, “in that world, I’m dead, six feet under. And that’s that.”

    However, he emphasized that “if Ridley has decided to do a second part … he will have really strong reasons,” adding, “I couldn’t think of that movie being less than absolutely spectacular.” The actor also admitted “to a certain tinge of jealousy,” because the film reminds him of “my youth” and what it meant for his life.

    Elsewhere in the press conference, he discussed a music documentary that he has been working on since 2011 called The Last Breath, for which footage has been shot on Indoor Garden Party’s European tour that just ended Friday night in Karlovy Vary. “What that documentary seeks to do is to just make people comfortable with the idea” that as a creative he can enjoy and spend time on film and music as passions. “One person actually said to me, ‘How famous do you need to be, man?’” Crowe recalled, calling that “ridiculous.” He added: “Music is really important to me. It’s a big creative thing that I don’t give up.”

    He also explained his recent focus on shaping the doc. “We needed this last run to actually give it a point. So The Last Breath is really about my connection to music.”

    That led to a question about Johnny Cash film Walk the Line, starring Joaquin Phoenix, and whether it was true that Crowe rejected the part. The star said he indeed did so, even though “I love Johnny Cash.” But he shared: “I thought it was cheating. I thought it was like, ‘OK, all of these things like Grammy nominations, all that sort of stuff will come with that movie.’ But music to me is so personal that I didn’t want it to come to me because I was pretending to be somebody else. That is what the acting is for. But the music is, selfishly, about my songs.”

    Crowe also shared that, in retrospect, “my reasons seem very insignificant and insufficient because I would have had a great time on that movie.” He then highlighted that Phoenix’s work in the role was “brilliant.”

    Crowe is one of several high-profile names getting Karlovy Vary honors this year. Alicia Vikander, Ewan McGregor and Robin Wright are the others. The festival is also paying homage to veteran independent film producer Christine Vachon.

    The 57th edition of the Karlovy Vary Festival, widely considered Central Europe’s biggest cinema party, runs through July 8. The main competition jury this year includes Patricia Clarkson.

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