Hollywood star Russell Crowe only made a flying visit to Ireland on Saturday for the premiere of his new movie Noah — but he still managed to slot in a couple of occasions to sample the black stuff.
Before he arrived at the Savoy Cinema on O’Connell St for the premiere, Crowe met up with his buddy Ronan Keating of Boyzone, for a pint of Guinness at Kehoes pub on South Anne St.
The pair became pals after Keating signed up as a judge on the Australian version of The X Factor a few years ago, and the singer also filmed a movie Down Under last year called Goddess.
This brought him to Gladiator star Crowe’s attention, and while talking on the red carpet on Saturday, he revealed he rates Keating as an actor with some potential.
“I auditioned Ronan for a movie I was making last year,” said Crowe. “I believe he has something to give. I didn’t cast him in the end because I was only allowed a set number of foreign actors. But I think I’ll get him a role eventually.”
Keating attended the premiere with his girlfriend Storm Uechtritz and his three children, Jack, Marie, and Ali.
Crowe was given a massive cheer by the crowd when he eventually arrived and patiently posed for pictures and signed autographs despite the downpour — which he subsequently admitted was quite appropriate, given the subject of his new movie.
The quietly spoken star, who seemed nothing like the rough and tumble aggressive Aussie he is labelled, said he had expected the film to be controversial, especially amongst right-wing Christians in the US for not sticking to the traditional tale and removing any reference to God.
He chatted about everything from his admiration of retired rugby ace Brian O’Driscoll to his love of Limerick rugby and his Gladiator co-star and pal Richard Harris.
After he made a speech before starstruck cinema attendees, he was taken out a side door and into a car and headed for the airport to attend Saturday night’s Scottish premiere in Edinburgh.
However, in Drumcondra he told his driver to stop at Fagans pub, the one-time local of former taoiseach Bertie Ahern, where he downed another pint of the black stuff with Noah co-star Douglas Booth, who was also on the whirlwind trip.
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