Russell Crowe is disputing a claim that he had a rough audition to star opposite Julia Roberts in the 1997 hit romantic comedy My Best Friend’s Wedding.
Crowe took to Twitter on Friday to address the film’s director, P.J. Hogan, having told author Scott Meslow in the book From Hollywood With Love that Crowe sat down for a table read with Roberts during the casting process. Hogan referred to it as “one of the worst table reads I’ve ever experienced” and said it became clear that Crowe, whom Hogan felt was a rising star, was not right for the film.
In his tweet, Crowe said that the audition never happened and that he has never read with Roberts. “Pure imagination on behalf of this director,” the Oscar winner wrote. “I did not audition for this film. I have never done a table read with the actress mentioned. Would be funny if it wasn’t so pointless.”
Hogan’s comments made headlines after Vulture published an excerpt from the book in February, which Crowe apparently didn’t know about until just recently. In the passage, Hogan said that Crowe was his initial top choice for the role of Michael, the titular best friend ultimately played in the movie by Dermot Mulroney; Hogan’s wife, Jocelyn Moorhouse, had directed Crowe in the 1991 Australian film Proof.
“I don’t know what went wrong,” Hogan said in the book about Crowe’s audition. “It was one of the worst table reads I’ve ever experienced. Russell was seated opposite Julia. He gripped that script, and he stared at that script, and he didn’t look at her once. He read every line in a monotone. At one point, Julia was literally leaning over the table, staring, like, inches from Russell’s face, trying to make eye contact. And he wouldn’t look at her. At the end of the reading, Russell came up to me and said, ‘I thought that went pretty well.’ And then I knew: Russell was not going to be in My Best Friend’s Wedding.
”The Hollywood Reporter has reached out to Hogan’s representative for comment. (THR)