Russell Crowe reveals the iconic role he regrets turning down the most

Ben Arnold
Actor Russell Crowe attends the premiere of the ShowTime limited series "The Loudest Voice," at the Paris Theatre, Monday, June 24, 2019, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Regrets, Russell Crowe has had a few.

But one role he turned down has stuck in his throat the most, but he's said that he said no to it because he 'hadn't earned' the potential praise he might have received for it.

But which part was it?

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“The only one I have a tinge of regret about, really, and possibly do regret, is turning down the Johnny Cash biopic,” Russ told Nova FM in Australia.

“It was one of those things of internal morality. It was like, 'This is a dream job for me!' I'd been playing, singing Johnny Cash songs since I was a little boy, but I felt that I would be then getting stuff that I hadn't earned. It just felt wrong to me.”

He added that he didn't want to be seen to be 'climbing on Johnny Cash's back to get Grammy nominations'.

Reese Witherspoon and Joaquin Phoenix as June and Johnny Cash in Walk The Line (Credit: Fox)

But on seeing what would become Walk The Line, Russell immediately regretted his decision not to take up the part in director James Mangold's movie.

“From the very first notes, when the camera is pushing through the prison, the knife jabs in the heart began,” Russ went on.

“Not only did I want to do the movie, but it was the exact kind of movie I wanted to do.”

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Joaquin Phoenix took on the role of Cash, earning him an Oscar nomination for Best Actor, among five nominations the movie received in all, with Reese Witherspoon, who played Cash's wife June, winning the Oscar for Best Actress.

Cash, it turns out, was a fan of Crowe's work, and once wrote him a letter complimenting him on his work in Gladiator.

Crowe added that the letter from Cash 'touched his heart', and remains among his most treasured possessions.