Russell Crowe announced as first big star to shine at Karlovy Vary

The actor will receive an award for his career and also perform the film festival's opening concert.

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 05.05.2023 13:39:00 (updated on 05.05.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe will be one of the main guests at this year’s Karlovy Vary International Film Festival. In addition to receiving an award for his career, he will play with his band Indoor Garden Party at the opening concert on June 30.

The film festival, which runs from June 30 to July 8 in the West Bohemian spa town, is the largest film festival in the Czech Republic. It will feature new films from across the world as well as several retrospectives. More top-tier film guests are expected to attend but have not yet been announced.

Crowe let the cat out of the bag on Twitter by listing the Karlovy Vary concert among three new tour dates for his band, though he didn’t mention the festival specifically. The organizers of the festival have now confirmed his participation.

He will receive the Crystal Globe for Outstanding Artistic Contribution to World Cinema at a screening of Peter Weir's historical adventure film Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, which was released 20 years ago. Crowe was nominated for a Golden Globe for his portrayal of Captain Jack Aubrey. The list of other films that will be screened has not yet been released.

A long list of awards and nominations

The New Zealand-born actor is probably best known for his starring role in the sword-and-sandal epic Gladiator, which earned him an Oscar for Best Actor. He was nominated two more times in that category, for The Insider and A Beautiful Mind, both of which were based on true events.

His other accolades include two Golden Globes, a BAFTA, a Screen Actors Guild Award, two Australian Film Academy Awards, and a Satellite award, among others.

His first appearance in an American film was in Sam Raimi's 1995 western The Quick and the Dead, together with Gene Hackman, Sharon Stone, and Leonardo DiCaprio. He also earned good reviews for his role in the 1997 retro crime drama L.A. Confidential. Gladiator, though, shot him into the top ranks of world film stars in 2000.

He has also tried his hand at directing, first in 2015 with The Water Diviner, which he also starred in. The film had mixed reviews, but his acting earned acclaim. He directed the crime thriller Poker Face, which had a limited release in 2022. Currently, he can be seen in the supernatural horror film The Pope’s Exorcist.

Russell Crowe performing. Photo: KVIFF, Twitter
Russell Crowe performing. Photo: KVIFF, Twitter

Music career dates back to the 1980s

Crowe's music career began in the 1980s when he recorded his first solo single "I Just Wanna Be Like Marlon Brando," which he recorded under the name Russ Le Roq.

After various other musical projects, he began the Indoor Garden Party in 2009 and the group released an album in 2017. On his website, Crowe describes the group as an event, a band, and a happening. “It’s fluid. The personnel changes, but it’s always big. It’s like a festival where I gather people I admire, musicians and storytellers, and we put on a show,” he said.

Crowe is also the owner of the oldest rugby club in Australia, The South Sydney Rabbitohs, founded in 1908. He took over the club in 2006 and helped to turn it around. In 2014, the team won the National Rugby League premiership trophy, ending a 43-year wait for success.  

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